A Brief History

It was in 1993 that a small group of Elders in the Muslim community purchased a house at 92 Harris Crescent in Sherwood for the purpose of establishing a Maktab and Musalla. This property adjoined the Sherwood Park. The Elders envisaged that part of the large park could, in future, be purchased from the Durban City Council to build a proper Madrassa and Musjid. Alhumdulillah, with the help of Allah SWT and the vision and foresight of the Elders of the community, a Maktab and Musalla was established in 1994, despite many objections from the mainly White residence of Sherwood. South Africa was just coming out of the apartheid era with democratic elections planned for 1994. Muslims were purchasing properties in the area and their population was increasing. The Maktab had about 40 students and was held in the afternoon. The first Taraweeh was performed in the Musalla in 1994. Alhumdulillah, Hifz classes were started with about 15 students in 1996.

Minimum renovations were made to this house to accommodate the Musalla, as the vision of a new building in the future was foremost in the minds of the Elders. Despite the cramped situation, the Maktab grew and more people attended the Musalla for salah. Fajr, Maghreb and ‘Isha Salawat were held in Jama’t. This arrangement continued until 2009.

Alhumdulillah, In 1996, a Madrassa for Muslimaat (females), Islahul Muslimaat, was established. There were about 40 girls attending this school at inception. The Maktab continued to be held in the afternoon, catering for boys and girls and the hifz classes for boys also continued in the same premises.

To Accommodate the increasing numbers, steel containers and Wendy houses, modified as class rooms, were used. The Musalla catered for about 40 people, with others using the classrooms. A PA system was used in the Musalla and the class rooms. During Taraweeh, the courtyard of the house was also used.

In 1998, a house at 90 Harris Crescent, adjoining the original property was purchased. Some of the classes were moved into this house. Again minimal renovations and no extensions were done to the house.
A need for a new building became urgent. Negotiations were entered into with the Ethekwini Municipalty for the purchase of a section of the park. Many objections were again received by the Municipality. The
Municipality finally gave the go-ahead for the purchase of a portion of the park adjoining the house at 92 Harris Crescent and extending to Abrey Road.

After many years of planning and extending the plans to include a Musjid and an under-cover car park, the vision of the Elders was finally fulfilled.

Alhumdulillah, Musjidus Saliheen was officially opened on Sunday, the 10th of July, 2011, much to the delight of the residence of Sherwood. After the opening of the Musjid, there was a sudden surge of people coming to the Musjid for salah, more than three times the number attending the Musalla. This clearly showed the need for a Musjid in the area.
After many years of planning, a building, which accommodates the Musjid and Madrassa, was completed.

Islahul Muslimaat (girls Madrassa) now accommodates about 350 girls in the morning, about 120 boys and girls in the afternoon Maktab and about 15 boys in the hifz classes.

With the Blessing and Barakah of Allah SWT and the sincerity and humbleness of the ‘Ulema and Elders involved in this magnificent project, the Madrassa and Musjid play an important role in the lives of the Muslim Community in the area. The vision and foresight of the Elders was finally fulfilled.

We ask one and all to make sincere dua’ to Allah SWT for His Blessings and Barakah to continue unabated in the future, Insha Allah.

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