All posts by mxfoundation

NHOF Criteria for Selection

Nebraska Hall of Fame, Criteria for Selection

  1.  A person shall have been deceased thirty-five years to be considered.
  2.  A person shall have been born in Nebraska, have lived a significant part of his or her life in Nebraska or, made a contribution to society that was affected by his or her residence in Nebraska.
  3.  Primary consideration is given to contributions in public affairs, the arts, the sciences, the professions; secondary consideration is given to entertainment, athletics, and kindred fields where interest, publicity, and general recognition may for a time be intense, but where a contribution to society is secondary.
  4. Activities that have added to the welfare of society and to the reputation of the state shall be weighed more heavily than activities primarily benefiting the individual himself or herself.

Omowale Language and Culture program

The Omowale Language and Culture program will offer various enriching opportunities including Camp Akili, an Omaha summer leadership camp that focuses on community leadership and service.  They will also offer quarterly sessions that will focus on the Kiswahili language as well as the Wolof & Mandinka languages of the Senegalese & Gambian countries.  Students will learn African language & culture as a supplement to their mandated school lessons.  They will correspond with students from our partner countries abroad to nurture and perfect their new language skills and will work to create an international entrepreneurship project with the African students that can be implemented in both countries.   Students will raise funds to travel to Senegal/Gambia for cultural exchange, rights of passage and to work together to implement their entrepreneur project.  They will share the many things that they learn abroad with the local community.  In addition, the Omowale program includes opportunities for incarcerated youth.  Youth who are in the correctional facilities can start the language and  culture program at the institution and continue immediately with the community based rendition of the program.  The program also provides an opportunity for youth of from any ethnic background who possess an interest in African language and culture to study and experience it.  Poor education, poverty, and violence are realities that do not have to be.  North Omaha youth are often lacking in positive cultural identity and deprived of a view of the world beyond the boundaries of the challenges they face right outside of their doors every day.  Positive self identity results in positive actions which, in turn, cultivate safer and more cooperative neighborhoods.

God’s Blessings

by Amir Sulaiman

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful

Whosoever would like to make a living by being grateful to Allah has a long labour ahead of him. It is enough for us to use all of our living days thanking Allah for Islam and it would be insufficient.

Rather we could spend all of our living days thanking Allah only for salat and on our deathbeds we would find ourselves coming up short. Even for the knowledge and ability to make one prostration we could spend our every waking hour thanking Allah for that prostration and we would still die in debt.

Do not allow yourself to forget that there are some from the Children of Adam (as) who have never made one prostration to their Lord. Neither they nor their parents or their parent’s parents as far as they can trace their lineage, have ever prostrated even once before their Creator. What is worse is that, for some of them, their children and their children’s children until the Day of Judgment will never make one prostration to Allah, Most High. They will never taste the sweetness of this perfected mode of worship. How blessed are the prostrators?! So whosoever among us prostrators who would like to make a living being grateful to Allah has a long labour ahead of him.

Do not allow yourself to forget that while we are sending up the foul smoke of our sins , in turn, Allah sends down the sweet mist of his blessings to cover the believer and disbeliever, the righteous and the wicked, the grateful and the ingrates alike. Have you not seen the life-giving rain falling upon the oppressed and the oppressor, the holy and the foul, the guided and the astray alike?

Have you not seen the fruit growing amidst the sincere and the hypocrites, the patient and the impatient, the just and the tyrants alike? One group exceeds the other group only by way of their degree of gratitude. However are there any amongst us who are truly grateful? And We have distributed the (water) amongst them, in order that they may celebrate (our) praises, but most men are averse (to aught) but (rank) ingratitude (25:50)

So, whosoever would like to make a living by being grateful to Allah has a long labour ahead of him. How much gratitude do we owe even for one verse of Qur’an, In the Name of Allah Most Gracious Most Merciful(1:1)? How many days of thanks should we spend for this verse let alone the six other verses that follow it or the other 113 surahs that follow them? What a mercy it is that Allah even turned His face and spoke to us. The Lord of all the worlds, the Master of the Day of Judgment, glorified is He, has revealed something of Himself to us when we are but mud turned to blood, bones, and bowels. And what has He revealed about Himself except that He is Most Gracious and Most Merciful. Glory be to Allah and mercy be on those who glorify Him. And We have explained to man, in this Qur’an, every kind of similitude: yet the greater part of men refuse (to receive it) except with ingratitude (17:89)

Oh you grateful ones, do not allow yourself to forget that even the knowledge and ability to be grateful is but a gift from Allah. Know that there are some from the Children of Adam (as) that do not have the knowledge or desire to thank Allah. What is worse is that neither their parents nor their children as far as the eye can see have been grateful to their Creator and Sustainer. So not only are we to thank Allah for His blessings but also thank Him for teaching us to thank Him for there are some who do not know or do not care. So we must thank Him for showing us how to thank Him. Then we must thank Him for giving us the insight to thank Him for instilling in us the desire to thank Him. Then we are indebted to Him for allowing us the thanks of that thanks which is thanks for the orginal thanks and so on and on until the day when the mountains will pass like clouds and the sky will be like molten brass and the Angels of the Garden and the Angels of the Fire will stand ready awaiting the command of their Lord.

So, whosoever would like to make a living by being grateful to Allah has a long labour ahead of him. Do not be neglectful of this labour for it is a good labour the fruits of which multiply exponentially. And remember! your Lord caused to be declared (publicly): “If ye are grateful, I will add more (favours) unto you (14:7). Out of Allah’s Grace and Mercy, He has decreed that our gratitude will increase His favours upon us , which in turn, will make us more grateful, which will increase His favours, making us more grateful, which will increase His favours and this pattern goes on and on until the Horn is sounded and the dead are raised to settle all accounts. So this long labour is a sweet and blessed labour and no labour has a greater profit margin than the labour of gratitude.

Is it enough to make your heart swell in your chest and tears to swell in your eyes to know that after all of this Allah calls Himself Al Shakur, The Grateful? How is Allah grateful to this newly created race of ingrates called humankind? How kind is He; how Merciful is He to show gratitude to a creation sprung from dirt, reproduced via a despised fluid and returns to the dirt as food for maggots. How forbearing is He to show gratitude while most of mankind is wandering the Earth neglectful of his duty to their Lord. We are not justly grateful yet our service to Him is always justly rewarded . No, rather the reward for our service is generously multiplied many times over while our wrong actions are counted only once if they are not wiped away as if they never happened. Who amongst us is truly grateful to The Grateful? May Allah have mercy upon us all.

What is certain is that there is nothing worthy of worship besides Allah, Most High. What is certain is that Muhammad is his servant and messenger, may peace and blessings be upon him, his family, and all those who follow them. What is certain is that all praise is for Allah, Lord of all the worlds.

We bestowed (in the past) Wisdom on Luqman: “Show (thy) gratitude to Allah.” Any who is (so) grateful does so to the profit of his own soul: but if any is ungrateful, verily Allah is free of all wants, Worthy of all praise. (31:12)

The Messiah once prayed, “O my Lord, how can I be thankful for the many blessings you have bestowed upon me, when the ability to thank You is, in itself, a blessing- for which I must render thanks?” God answered saying, “That you know this is thanks enough.”

Omowale Language & Culture Program

Omowale Language & Culture Program includes workshops that will focus on the Kiswahili language as well as the Wolof & Mandinka languages of the Senegalese & Gambian countries.  Students will learn Black & African language & culture as a supplement to their mandated school lessons.  Students will have the opportunity to correspond with students from our partner countries and work to create an international entrepreneurship project with the African students.  They will also have an opportunity to travel to Senegal/Gambia for cultural exchange, rights of passage and to work together to implement their entrepreneur project.

Ujima Project

Ujima is a Kiswahili word that means “familyhood”.   It is also recognized as an Afrikan Kwanzaa principle, “Collective Work & Responsibility” (Making our brothers & sisters problems our problems, and working to solve them together).  This principle is the basis of the program.

Activities include; regular volunteer visits to the Nebraska Correctional Facilities particularly Harambee Afrikan Cultural Organization meetings in the Lincoln & Tecumseh penitentiaries & the Omaha Youth Detention Facility, Children with Incarcerated Parents Program to provide transportation for children to visit parents who are incarcerated, and transportation for families to visit incarcerated family members.

Harambee Umoja Youth Event

Harambee Umoja Youth Event (Come together for Unity):

The purpose of this event is to facilitate a means for the HACO members to give back to the community and help illuminate positive life-choice alternatives for the youth, to introduce and help the youth utilize positive African principles and to provide something fun for the youth to be a part of.  The 2008 activity is a premier to the 5 day African American leadership camp which will be facilitated in 2009.

Black August Omaha

Black August Omaha is an annual Edutainment (Education & Entertainment) event which features performances and presentations by local & national artivists (artists & activists) in various disciplines from drama to dance, from singing to instrumental music presentations.  The purpose of this event is to highlight various topics including the Malcolm X birthplace and the development of the landmark, to celebrate & educate the community, particularly the youth about our history, to share our culture through various art forms with an emphasis on hip hop, to promote communalism and to introduce and observe various principles concerning the overall health and well being of the community.   This committee will also conduct workshops throughout the year.

NHC Speakers Bureau

Sharif Liwaru has joined the Nebraska Humanities Council as a speaker on Malik El Shabazz (Malcolm X) .This presentation can be made possible by the Nebraska Humanities Council as part of the NHC Speakers Bureau.

What did Malcolm X stand for and what significance does he have to the radical politics and movements of his time? Liwaru will share his life as he describes it, as a “chronology of changes”, presenting a view of Malcolm’s life and the changes he underwent, as well as the relevance of his social, political, and even spiritual thought.  The challenge is to take Malcolm X, all of him, and present this information in an accessible manner.

Malik El Shabazz (Malcolm X)  is one of approximately 300 programs offered through the Nebraska Humanities Council Speakers Bureau. The more than 165 available speakers include acclaimed scholars, writers, musicians, storytellers and folklorists on topics ranging from pioneer heritage to ethics and law to international and multicultural issues, making it the largest humanities speakers bureau in the nation!

Most speakers are available to any non-profit organization in Nebraska at the cost of just $50 for each. Each program lasts 30 minutes to an hour, plus a question-and-answer period.  The most frequent users of the NHC Speakers Bureau are primary and secondary schools, colleges and universities, libraries, museums and historical societies, agencies for the elderly, rural organizations, churches, arts organizations and ethnic organizations. The Nebraska Humanities Council sponsors the largest Speakers Bureau program in the U.S. according to the

National Endowment for the Humanities.

For a information detailing the available speakers and guidelines for booking them, please access our website at www.nebraskahumanities.org (Speakers and Resources page) or contact the Nebraska Humanities Council at 215 Centennial Mall South, Suite 330, Lincoln, NE 68508, phone (402) 474-2131, fax (402) 474-4852 or e-mail nhc@nebraskahumanities.org.

Shabazz Gardens

The community garden program will promote collective community effort and leadership in North Omaha.  Participants will grow fresh fruits, vegetables, herbs, and flowers.  This will help families save money on their food bills, and improve the aesthetics in the neighborhood.   The program seeks to foster positive self esteem & youth peace (violence prevention) by promoting fellowship between youth and elders, entrepreneurialism, a healthy mental and physical state of being, cleaner air & environment, healthy eating habits & agricultural education for our community.

Entrepreneurs

Our first program is an Entrepreneur program.  We partner with Apple Education, Junior Achievement and Kid Biz to make this a reality.  The JA Company Program allows students to practice business and entrepreneurship skills in a hands-on business environment.  With the support and guidance of volunteer consultants from the local business community, the JA Company Program provides basic economic education for high school students. By organizing and operating an actual business enterprise, students not only learn how businesses function, they also learn about the structure of the U.S. free enterprise system and the benefits it provides.  The program helps young people appreciate and better understand the role of business in our society.  So, through hands-on activities, mentoring, presentations, and behind-the-scenes field trips, students will discover the world of business and financial management. The participants are then challenged to identify a community problem or business opportunity and design a financial solution. Students will present their solutions to their peers and community in a financial management and business fair.

The Entrepreneur program is in need of some technology support including a computer or two to hold the business records of the JA Company Program and run the program software of the Kid Biz piece, Financial record keeping software, a color printer, etc.  Each youth involved in the program needs their own Kid Biz booklet and program.  They are $10 each.  They also need stationary (paper, printer ink, and so on), postage, and extras such as travel expenses.  This is a relatively inexpensive program as it is lead by volunteers, but we are in need of a donor to cover these areas.