Get muddy for safe clean water in Gaza

Hold onto your hats (and hijabs): this one’s going to be a blast! February’s chilly Crawl of Duty mud run challenge has now been reincarnated as Mud Rush, an epic adventure to be held over the August Bank Holiday weekend in three locations across the country. Those of you who (rightly) considered mid-winter much too cold to take on an obstacle course challenge now have the chance to cool off  from the late summer heat (inshallah), while supporting an extremely worthy cause.

This tough sponsorship event aims to raise ample funds to provide safe drinking water to families in Palestine facing a severe water crisis. In Gaza, over 90% of the water supply is not fit for drinking. By taking on the muddy tunnels and tyre walls, swinging across ponds on the end of a rope and wading through river water, you will enable the humanitarian charity Muslim Hands to address the water needs of the whole community.

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Whether you’re based in the south of England, the Midlands or Scotland, there’s a brilliant challenge waiting for you. Those in London and surrounding areas get to experience the course of the famous Nuts Challenge in Dorking, Surrey, on Satuday 27 August. For those in Birmingham, Leicester, Nottingham and Stoke, there’s the warped assault course in Wolverhampton on Sunday 28 August. And last, but not least, for anyone in the Glasgow area there’s the magnificent obstacle course at Mauchline in East Ayrshire on Monday 29 August.

If you’ve always wanted to do a mud run, but the likes of Tough Mudder and Born Survivor have always filled you with fear, this could be the perfect challenge for you. While these obstacle courses are likely to put you through your paces, they will be on the moderately easy end of the mud run or obstacle course race spectrum. You’ll need to be reasonably fit, but not a fitness fanatic; you will be given an in-depth safety briefing and guided throughout by a team of qualified instructors.

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The challenge is open to both brothers and sisters over the age of 16, or over 14 with parental consent. It could be the perfect challenge for a brave family or husband and wife team, looking for some quality bonding time. Alternatively get together as a community group and have an amazing adventure, while reaping the rewards of helping those in need. Transport to all of the venues will be provided.

With a reasonable registration fee set at £30 and a fundraising target of £200, you will enable Palestinian families to enjoy better health as they are less likely to get sick from contaminated water. With access to safe drinking water, children will live healthier lives and be able to spend more time in school; adults will be less likely to lose income due to sickness or having to care for poorly children.

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Expect to laugh out loud, discover true team work, experience fraternity at its best and get just a little wet and muddy. Join up with friends and family, work colleagues, classmates or members of your local mosque, and build the perfect team together. Dress up or down, in fancy dress or old clothes, and prepare to be put through your paces. Just don’t forget to bring a change of clothes for afterwards!

Adventures like this don’t come along every day. Why go to the extremes of the likes of Tough Mudder, when you can have fun with Mud Rush, whilst simultaneously raising funds to provide safe drinking water to families in incredible need? Go on, challenge yourself this summer!

Dedicated to tackling the root causes of poverty around the world, Muslim Hands is an international aid agency which has responded to countless emergencies and established many long term projects worldwide.

To find out more or to reserve your Mud Rush place, please visit the Muslim Hands website today. 

An epic adventure

The icy breeze of a chilly winter’s morning, 12 degrees Celsius tops, would be enough to send most of us back indoors for a lazy day at home. A bunch of brave adventurers determined to raise funds for orphans worldwide were undeterred however.

On Saturday 20 February 2016, nearly 40 men and women descended on a remote farm in rural Surrey for a fundraising challenge that would push them to their limits and beyond. To brave not just the cutting February wind, but freezing water, fearsome obstacles and muddy ground. The uninitiated would ask what on earth possessed these heroic explorers to sign up for such a challenge, at this time of year, but not so the participants themselves.

“It was all about helping out the orphans and doing something for those most in need,” explained Tarikul Islam from Luton. “We all are fortunate to have parents, so not having one is not something that we would like anyone to go through — especially small children in less able countries.”

Four teams – two groups of men and two groups of women – had signed up to take part in the ambitious Muslim Hands challenge, Crawl of Duty. They would complete a 5 km obstacle course run, following part of the course of the famous Nuts Challenge.

Tarikul went on: “An obstacle course like this was something we thought would be appealing to others to sponsor us for as they would know we were doing something tough and hence they would feel more inspired to help out.”

Tarikul’s team, the Luton Massive, consisted of five very close friends actively engaged in charity work. Members of the group had previously completed the Mount Snowdon Challenge with Muslim Hands in 2014, run marathons and taken part in several winter walks. They were set to compete against ten other men, including members of staff from Muslim Hands itself.

Team Mix It Up

Running with female instructors separately, meanwhile, twelve strong Team Mix It Up from Birmingham would challenge the seven member Team 313 from east London. The former from Mix It Up Ladies Fitness Studio in Birmingham are already seasoned challengers, having previously taken part in Islamic Relief’s Superhero Run and their Ben Nevis Challenge in 2015. They had tenacious competition, however: under the supervision of personal fitness trainers from 313 Fitness Studio in Manor Park, the latter were determined to conquer the course to raise as much money as possible for this worthy cause.

So it was that they set off on a great adventure, skirting around the edge of a ploughed field, not quite sure what was in store for them, beyond the river banks and forest ahead of them. Soon they would encounter mounds of mud and rubble to climb over, and ditches filled knee deep with freezing water to wade through. They would crawl through a tunnel on hands and knees, causing scrapes and bruises. Then more ditches and more banks to clamber back up again would follow, each one slightly more difficult than the last. They would clamber through a tangle of cables and pipes designed to trip them up and tie them in knots, then skip over old tyres set out across the ground.

A few moments of reprieve would follow as they jogged through the woodland, climbing over fallen trees here and there, but soon they would be scrambling down a river bank and into the ankle deep water, to follow the river along its course. Next they would climb up another steep bank again, grabbing hold of rope netting, working together as a team to help each other out. Over the top and down into the river again. In and out, up and down, wading and climbing and running. Climbing over a platform. Climbing over a wall of tyres. Nearly drowning when the river bed gave way to a hidden trench around a bend.

Teamwork was the key on this obstacle course. Some of the obstacles were impossible to overcome alone. At every point all the members of every team worked together, helping each other up through difficult situations. Great communication and understanding of each other’s needs helped them complete the challenge together. Far from giving up, the participants found themselves getting more energetic as the event went on.

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At one point they had to pull themselves through a tunnel, set vertically up a bank. This challenge took all the energy out of the participants and only “Alhamdulilah” was an adequate rejoinder there. A massive climbing net followed, rising as high as nearby trees. Going up was not necessarily the problem though, but getting down the other side: they had to slide down poles back to ground level. Some of them would conquer their fear of heights here.

Next obstacle: a rope swing across a muddy pond. Each participant grabbed hold of the rope and tried to swing right over to the other side. Most failed miserably and sloshed down into the cold brown water almost immediately; everyone was convinced that the rope was actually too short and they’d been set up to fail. But the challenge waits for no one. Moments later they’re crawling on their fronts through sloppy wet mud, under a mesh of barbed wire.

Another water filled ditch followed. Then a balancing bar over another one. Then a mound of earth and yet another ditch, waist deep. Then another wall of tyres to clamber over; another excuse to work together as a  team. Then down into a series of tunnels, then up over a vast pile of tyres, then under a bar, then over the next one, then through a tyre, then over a fence; enough to cause anyone to give up. It was exhausting and tough.

But even all of that probably could not prepare them for possibly the worst obstacle of the course: to jump off a large platform into a deep, long, cold pond, shoulder deep, which they had to wade or swim across to the other side. They were soaking wet and the only consolation was that the water washed off the thick mud from their clothes. It’s a surprise they didn’t get hypothermia. But they’re on the home straight now: they’re heading for the finish line and victory.

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“The experience was epic,” exclaimed Nadiya from Team 313, “Going through freezing cold water, the level of which varied from knee high to almost drowning, and so many obstacles: falling and slipping in mud, screaming like buffoons, conquering my fear of heights… What more can I ask for in return of helping create a brighter future for orphans, inshaAllah?”

The course took under an hour to complete, with a medal and certificate awarded at the end. Altogether, those participating raised over £7000 for Muslim Hands’ orphans worldwide appeal, which is an extraordinary achievement. But then these were extraordinary people, mashallah!

“Crawl of Duty was amazing,” said Ayesha from Team Mix It Up: “Massive shout out to the ladies that took part!! We smashed it and everybody completed it all… Covered in bruises today but feel fantastic.”

Other participants described Crawl of Duty as the best event they had been to. “Enjoyed every moment of it and would do it again and again,” said one participant.

“We are so lucky that we did this,” said another, “I would very much recommend it to others! It’s all for a good cause and you have fun. It’s win win!! Felt muddy, exhausted and tired yet still I had the best time ever, especially as I was with my close mates!”

Those of us who missed out, fearing that February would be just too cold to take on such a challenge, can only be a little envious not to have been there now. We missed an epic adventure, some brilliant teamwork and the opportunity to do immense good on behalf of others. Next time we will be brave! Next time, inshallah!

Let’s chill and do the Gaza Winter Walk

Let’s get the 2016 challenges year off to a flying start by taking part in the Muslim Hands Gaza Winter Walk.  This awesome event, now in its eighth year, takes place in 8 cities around the country from north to south, making it an event not to be missed. You’ll join thousands of other walkers from communities all across the country, united in a mission to raise funds for the children of Gaza. You’ll take on a five mile trek traversing a variety of terrain, so be sure to wrap up warmly.

Since 2007 when the Gaza Winter Walk first began, Muslim Hands have provided emergency relief such as food, shelter and medicines, set up income generation projects to rehabilitate the agricultural economy and built large-scale water purification systems to combat Gaza’s severe water shortages. They have also supported the construction of the medical lab and integrated pharmacy in Al-Durrah Hospital, as well as the expansion of the emergency and respiratory departments.

The Gaza Winter Walk could be the perfect start to a year filled with adventurous challenges. Can you think of a better way to warm up and ease into the year to come? Check out the dates and locations below to find a venue near you. Or go mad and do the full nation tour!

Muslim Hands: Gaza Winter Walk

LOCATION DATE VENUE REGISTER
Glasgow 09 January 2016 Kelvingrove Park, G3 6BY REGISTER
Bradford 10 January 2016 Lister Park, BD9 4NR REGISTER
Birmingham 16 January 2016 Cannon Hill Park, B13 8RD REGISTER
Manchester 17 January 2016 Heaton Park, M25 2SW REGISTER
London 23 January 2016 Hyde Park, W2 2UH REGISTER
Luton 24 January 2016 Wardown Park, LU2 7HA REGISTER
Cardiff 30 January 2016 Bute Park, CF10 3DX REGISTER
Leicester 31 January 2016 Abbey Park, LE4 5AQ REGISTER

For more information about this challenge and to take part, please visit the Muslim Hands fundraising page now.

 

Get ready for Crawl of Duty in aid of Muslim Hands

FB-Flyer-FRONT[1]Muslim Hands are back with another round of their popular Crawl of Duty challenge, this time in the South of England early in 2016.

It will take place in Dorking, Surrey at the home of the infamous Nuts Challenge. The muddy course features obstacles, tunnels, tyres, rope swing, water dippers and much more.

With female instructors available on a gender-segregated obstacle challenge, it promises to be an exciting event for both men and women.

It’s happening on Saturday 20th February, in aid of orphans worldwide. Funds raised will go towards needy orphans and impoverished children around the world. This ranges from modest classrooms serving isolated communities that would otherwise not have access to schooling, to campuses serving large groups of poor and disadvantaged children.

For more information, visit the Muslim Hands website

Muslim Hands Crawl of Duty

Muslim Hands Scotland presents, Crawl of Duty: a 5K assault course to test your strength and stamina.

Join Muslim Hands as they embark on this obstacle packed mission to raise money for their Emergency Fund to support crises in Iraq, Palestine and Central Africa. Test your ability to the max and fuel your inner adrenaline to its peak as you fight for survival. From crawling through tunnels to jumping over walls and facing the ice cold water, you’ll be pushing yourself to the limit.

This gender segregated challenge (separate tracks for men and women) takes place at the Scottish Adventure Centre, Craufurdland Castle, Fenwick, East Ayrshire. If you live in Scotland or the north of England, this is a challenge not to be missed!

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Book your place today: https://muslimhandsuk.wufoo.eu/forms/crawl-of-duty/