On Sunday, May 22nd, recently arrived Afghan neighbors received free dental health care at Grove Dental Clinic, the office of Dr. Maqsood Chaudhry in Falls Church. Dentists and other dental professionals volunteered their time to see almost seventy patients. FamilUSA, a non-profit working with local Afghan families, coordinated the logistics and paperwork with the families. Local elected officials came out to support the event, which was covered by WTOP and NBC4.
This was truly an interfaith event, with participation from the McLean Islamic Center, Dar Al Hijrah, Temple Rodef Shalom, Congregation Olam Tikvah, the Knights of Columbus, the Rotary, Tysons Interfaith, ICD (Interfaith Communities for Dialogue), and JAMAAT (Jews and Muslims and Allies Acting Together). Raj Khalsa Gurdwara provided 200 bagged Sikh burrito meals for patients and volunteers.
Tysons Interfaith assembled hand-sewn mesh gift bags for patients which included welcome cards in Pashto that were decorated with drawings by young people from Redeemer Lutheran, the McLean Islamic Center, and the McLean Stake of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The Knights of Columbus raised funds to support transportation for the Afghan families for the event and both the Knights of Columbus and Tysons Interfaith provided toys for the children.
Local faith communities continue to work with our Afghan neighbors in dealing with the challenges they face integrating into their new lives here. On this recent Sunday in May, I was blessed to be able to join with people of many different faith traditions in support of them and in fellowship with one another at Afghan Dental Day.
This blog post is the expressed opinion of its writer and does not necessarily reflect the views of Tysons Interfaith or its members.