Thrills along Wakaf heritage trail

They flipped pratas at a restaurant, identified different fabrics at a bridal gallery and scaled a rock climbing wall inside a madrasah, all in a race against their peers.

Around 180 students from various schools and full-time madrasahs completed challenges at nine pit stops around the Kampong Glam area as part of the launch of Wakaf Heritage Trail yesterday.

The race, which was organised by the Islamic Religious Council of Singapore (Muis), aimed to get the participants, aged between 11 and 18, to appreciate the rich history of wakaf in the area.

Wakaf is an Islamic charitable endowment and, in Singapore, is typically in the form of a property bequeathed or willed by a Muslim towards religious or charitable uses.

"We wanted to celebrate the contributions of the pioneering philanthropists because without them, many of us wouldn't be able to benefit," said Mr Masagoes Isyak, head of the Zakat and Wakaf Strategic Unit at Muis. The Kampong Glam area has 28 wakaf properties, such as Sultan Mosque in Muscat Street.

Yesterday, Minister-in-charge of Muslim Affairs Yaacob Ibrahim launched the trail at Madrasah Aljunied Al-Islamiah in Victoria Lane. The trail will be adopted by the madrasah as part of its school activities.

Dr Yaacob also unveiled wakaf heritage markers, which will be mounted on these properties to educate the public on these sites and to remember the philanthropists who created them. These properties include the Madrasah Alsagoff Al-Arabiah in Jalan Sultan and Hajjah Fatimah Mosque in Beach Road.

He hoped that through the trail, more people will be inspired to give back to the community.

This article was first published on May 31, 2015.
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