MINNEAPOLIS -- It's called the "Day of Dignity."
And for more than a thousand people in north Minneapolis on Saturday, it marked an opportunity to give and receive help -- while developing a deeper understanding of the Muslim faith.
"Coining it the 'Day of Dignity' really says a lot and sums up what we're trying to do -- is be of service to the community," said Makram El-Amin, the Imam at Masjid An-Nur mosque in North Minneapolis.
Several local Muslim organizations, along with Masjid An-Nur, helped put on the event, which is part of a nation-wide effort to serve more than 20,000 homeless and people in need in 15 cities throughout the United States.
In Minneapolis, men, women and children could come to the event for free food, clothing, entertainment, bathing supplies and medical, job and housing advice.
"It's really is giving back to the community, what they say to us often this is what they need," said Kamillah El-Amin, one of the local organizers.
Well-known hip hop artist Brother Ali was among the event's featured entertainment.
Local Muslim leaders say they hope the outreach will go a long way toward helping people to better understand Islam.
"It really is an expression of our faith tradition, which I think we share in common with other faith traditions -- to really be of service to humanity, to mankind and the fundamental belief that everyone should be able to live a dignified life," Makram El-Amin said.
For Nell Davis, a mother of five, it was a profound opportunity to get the help she, her family and others in the community need.
"[We've] had to overcome a lot, so this is a big help," Davis said.
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