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Understanding Britain’s
Muslim communities - report
The Institute of Community Cohesion
(iCoCo), based at Coventry University,
has launched a ground breaking
report on the diversity of Muslim
communities in Britain.
The report “Understanding and
appreciating Muslim diversity: towards
better engagement and participation”
sets out a model that highlights
religious and ethnic diversity. It
illustrates where these intersect to
influence the establishment of local
leadership structures and networks.
This model will help those working
in local agencies to identify a wider
range of potential contacts in local
communities, reducing dependence
on traditional community leaders who
may represent only a limited section
of Muslim communities. The model
will also help local service providers
ensure that services better reflect
when engaging with or delivering
communities and believes that
local needs and that sub-sections
services to them. This report helps to
local authorities need to reconsider
of the Muslim community are not
de-mystify Muslim communities while engagement strategies so they reflect
over looked or misrepresented in
demonstrating how local authorities the increasing complexities and
developing and delivering local
can ensure that they are talking change within all local communities.
to the real representatives of local iCoCo was established in 2005
Professor Ted Cantle of iCoCo,
communities.” to provide a new approach to race,
said: “Britain is home to probably
The report also highlights the diversity and multiculturalism and
the most diverse group of Muslim
importance of understanding local represents a unique partnership
communities in the Western World.
communities in order to build cohesion of academic, statutory and non-
As a consequence of reviewing and
between them. iCoCo believes that governmental bodies, combining the
developing community cohesion
if there is better understanding and experience and expertise of Coventry
strategies in different parts of the
appreciation of the various Muslim University, DeMontfort University,
Country, iCoCo has developed this
communities it will be easier to build Leicester University and Warwick
approach to understanding and
bridges between them and all other University with practitioners from a
appreciating Muslim diversity. Too
communities to build mutual trust and range of diverse backgrounds and
often we have found that local service
respect. professions.
providers take an overly simplistic
iCoCo is now extending this More information is available at
view of local Muslim communities
work to consider diversity in other
CII to launch first Islamic qualification
On 10th April 2008, The Chartered but throughout the world. Group, says: “We’re quite active in
Insurance Institute (CII) Group “We aim to have all the learning the Middle East and Takaful is on
launched its first Islamic insurance materials in place and available for a huge increase here. Our interest
qualification in September with UK applications by the beginning of here is two fold – it’s a commitment to
the Bahrain Institute of Banking September and successful examinees the region and secondly the market’s
and Finance (BIBF). The Takaful will receive an internationally growing outside the Middle East and
programme, which observes Islamic recognised certificate.” suddenly there is demand for further
law, covers topics such as Shari’a BIBF plans to publish an Arabic training in that area.
practice, accounting standards for version of the programme’s textbook “With any new facet to the industry
Takaful and structure and operations and develop a series of textbooks there is a need for clear demonstration
of Islamic insurance companies. and training programs in the different of competence in that. Particularly,
Lee Gladwell, director of general areas of Takaful, such as Islamic Taka operators operating outside the
insurance for the CII, says: “The accounting standards for Takaful region can demonstrate to businesses
Takaful sector is quickly establishing operators. that they have an understanding and
itself as a key component in the Mark Greenwood, head of regional competence.”
industry, not just in the Middle East business in the Middle East at CII By Jennifer Bollen at incisivemedia
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