Mosque welcome for new members
A Muslim teenager and eight other volunteers
were formally enrolled as members of first aid charity St John
Ambulance, at a Southampton Mosque.
Among the group were Sannah Dad, 15, from
Eastleigh, the Countess of Portsmouth who is President of St John
Ambulance in Hampshire and Chrissie Morse, President of the
In Hampshire, enrolments have traditionally
taken place in church – but Sannah and her family asked for the
official welcome to be conducted in their place of worship.
St John Ambulance has always been multi-faith
St John Ambulance Enrolling Officer
Rashid Brora, Secretary of the Medina
Mosque, welcomed the idea and said: ‘It is an honour. It is a
first where Muslims and non-Muslims have come together to celebrate
something in this Mosque.’
Harry Dymond, St John Ambulance Chief
Commissioner Operations and the ceremony’s Enrolling Officer,
described it as a unique event.
‘This is the first time a St John Ambulance
enrolment ceremony has been held in a Mosque.
‘I must say a very, very special thank you
to the committee of the Mosque who are absolutely fantastic in
welcoming us here.’
He added: ‘St John Ambulance has always been
multi-faith and we have people from all religions who are
members. I am absolutely delighted that Southampton is the
first city to have conducted such a ceremony.
‘I must also say a special thank you to
Sannah and her mother who asked if this could be possible.’
Sannah, a pupil at The Toynbee School,
Chandlers Ford, joined St John Ambulance in January and was
supported by friends and colleagues from Eastleigh.
They were among more than 50 guests at the
ceremony and enjoyed wonderful hospitality from the Mosque
In Hampshire there are more than 1,000
members of the charity. Nationally there are over 23,000
adult members and nearly 20,000 young members who can be seen in
their distinctive uniforms helping the public throughout the
country on a daily basis.