Windsor

Volunteers handing out free shawarmas at Windsor Mosque to encourage voting

Volunteers with the Canadian Muslim Vote non-profit are spending election day handing out free shawarmas at the Windsor Mosque.

'Voting only takes a few minutes,' says Mariam Rajabali

Mariam Rajabali is the Windsor regional coordinator with the Canadian Muslim Vote non-profit. (Dale Molnar/CBC)

Volunteers with the Canadian Muslim Vote non-profit are spending election day handing out free shawarmas at the Windsor Mosque.

It's as a way of rewarding voters, as well as a way of encouraging constituents who have yet to cast a ballot, according to Mariam Rajabali, Windsor regional coordinator with Canadian Muslim Vote.

"Every day, Muslims are praying five times a day and a lot of those times are going to the mosque during the afternoon," she said. "So when they do that, we're trying to remind them … voting only takes a few minutes of their time."

She says both the mosque and the shawarmas are "open to anyone and everyone, even if you don't subscribe to being a Muslim."

"Food brings the community together, and if we can get people together to pray, why can't we get them to eat and vote together as well?" Rajabali added.

Rajabali, a second-year law student at the University of Windsor, is part of a group of students working with Canadian Muslim Vote to encourage Muslim voters in Windsor to participate in this year's election. 

"We've had a lot of success in reaching out to organizations in Windsor specifically," she said. "The mosque has been helpful. The Islamic school in Windsor has also been really helpful with … getting the message out to parents as well."

Volunteers will continue handing out free shawarmas until 8:30 p.m.

With files from Jonathan Pinto

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