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Youth Club’s 2016 – Year in Review

At the close of 2016, Youth Club reminisces its exciting new projects, the fun-filled activities, the laughs, the tears, the events, the tours and all those wonderful moments that it experienced throughout the year. Not being able to share everything in words or pictures, we bring for you a brief review of our year so you can have a share in our memories too.

 

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  • Youth Club established its HQ office in January!
  • Over 13 sisters of the YC team enrolled in a 3 year Quran course that started in January, Alhamdolillah!
  • More than 100 amulets were opened and destroyed by the CEO, Raja Zia ul Haq.
  • The YC sisters had their long-awaited first swimming event.
  • Youth Club launched its Telegram channel, telegram.me/youthclubpk
  • The team visited an old home to spread love and gifts.
  • Several classes were started under top-notch scholars at the YC office for the team, including Arabic, Usool ul Fiqh, Emaan (faith) etc. 
  • YCL launched its counselling services which were warmly welcomed by the public and catered to more than hundred young people.  
  • Youth Club Karachi had their biggest event, Crossroads, featuring many local and international speakers.
  • The brothers went on an exciting bike-trip to the northern areas.
  • The YCI team braved through the month of Ramadan in absence of the CEO, Raja Zia ul Haq, while successfully conducting 10 Ramadan exclusive courses.
  • YCK conducted 8 Ramadan halaqahs around their city while YCL conducted many in Lahore!
  • Youth Club Lahore launched its video series “Reminder series” on social media.
  • Several team members, brothers and sisters, observed aitikaf during the last ‘ashrah of the blessed month!
  • The sisters formed a special team and conducted dawah stalls in several institutes across the twin cities.
  • #JagoUthoBadalDo, the YC hashtag trended locally on Twitter before the event day!
  • The first ever youth conference was organized at Kunri, Sindh. 
  • Youth Club Karachi had its exciting dawah stall for 2 days at Talent Expo Karachi, the expo being attended by 30,000+ people.
  • YC raised the benchmark for its biggest ever female event, by holding the highly appraised “Being Her” event in F9 Park.
  • YC collaborated, hosted and worked with AlKauthar, Azaan, Live Deen, Role Model Institute, Alhuda International, Burooj Institute, IOU Speakers and many local scholars across different chapters. 
  • Youth Club Lahore launched a unique campaign “The Ultimate Role Model”, to educate the youth about the character and attributes of Prophet ﷺ
  • The brothers initiated spiritually enriching Fajr sessions at masajid!
  • YC acquired a drone phantom 3 for media productions.
  • The YCI team bid farewell to their longest standing president and the last of the founding sisters of YC, as the Karachi team welcomed her into their chapter.
  • Instagram competitions were held with many participating in it.
  • YCL conducted two mega events for the year 2016 which were attended by 300+ youth!
  • YC conducted its first ever major online event, Back on Track.
  • YC’s Facebook page hit the massive 40k likes milestone!
  • The teams successfully (well, almost) pulled off surprise parties for the ex-president YCI, ex-operations manager YCI and the standing CEO, Raja Zia ul Haq.

 

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  • YC conducted a whopping 600+ talks throughout the year.
  • More than 42,000 lives were touched and inspired.
  • Approximately 50+ institutes were visited by Youth Club where life-changing workshops were held, including LUMS, EME, NUST, FAST and IBA (among others). 
  • YCL alone conducted 30+ workshops catering to various problems of the youth.

 

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Sidra Naz of the Social Welfare department said:
“I must say I have totally transformed into a new person, I was crawling before and #YCTaughtMe to walk and then run towards the Deen of Allah”

Sana Aslam, a valuable member of YCI who shifted to Lahore a few months ago, shared her feelings:
“YC is my family in which I have my sisters, my friends, my teachers and they supported me to take new initiatives, maintain balance in life and have fun….
…Side by side or miles apart, we are sisters connected by heart!”

Ishaq bin Sadiq, President of YCK, shared the following words:
“As the president of Youth Club Karachi for the past 2 years, I have learned a lot. I consider it a blessing for myself to be a part of Youth Club and at the same time a big responsibility. Youth Club is my passion and everything for me. For past 2 years, Youth Club Karachi is becoming better and better everyday and the team is working dedicatedly in changing the lives of youth. May Allah accept our efforts and help us in the cause.”

Sana Azaz, the Decor Manager and a dedicated member who currently resides in the USA, had to say:
“My best moment of 2016?
Every moment, where I learnt something and I felt like my faith elevated at that point…

…YC has expanded especially this year, this is what I observed and that’s an amazing thing, welcoming new people. And it’s YC speciality that it has people from every field, and they are very special on their own.”

Hajrah Khawar, Ex-President of YCI who left in October of this year, said:
“Looking back at my 5 years spent in YC, and seeing it grow from an idea to this inspiring and happening organization, all I can say is YC gave me a lot! It taught me many lessons; in relationship and dealings with others, in what true friendship really is, what living for a purpose is like, what spreading love and hope means, what working in the way of Allah is, what absolutely loving your work means, how without dawah we can lead empty lives…
…a big thank you to the amazing people of Youth Club, may you always remain this amazing and be rewarded amazingly”.

Mohammad Ali, President of YCL, said:
“…Despite all the difficulties …Youth Club Lahore stood up, adopted wisdom and kept the da’wah work alive in Lahore. Youth Club Lahore inspired hundreds of youth towards the deen, through its regular workshops, courses and street da’wah.
…YCL is looked upon as a source of guidance for the educated youth as to how to be a Muslim in the 21st century. We were approached by several institutes, to name some: University of Punjab, LUMS, UET, AIMS, SIMS, as well as Akhuwat – the biggest microfinancing organisation – to conduct sessions and workshops. Hundreds of students and professionals got inspired and expressed desire to become part of Youth Club.”

Sana Taha, an amazing new addition to the YC team, shared the following:
“I just joined YC this year and it has been amazing. I’ve always wondered what it’s like to work with a motivated group of people who don’t get competitive against each other. YC showed me that it’s possible to be positive, upbeat and still give your best to your work…
… I am honored to have worked at YC and I am grateful to everyone at YC for showing me a better side of work ethics.”

Mohsin Cheema, an active and loyal member of YC, had to say:
“For me YC is not just an organisation, YC is a lifestyle! Every year we make new trends, set new records and achieve new milestones. We don’t settle for ordinary, we aim for excellence.
YC has touched many lives, including mine, and I am forever indebted to it. 2016 has been a phenomenal year for YC. We produced top-notch workshops, trainings, fun-filled activities, pizza parties, soccer camps, nights-out for boys and much more.
One thing that inspires me the most about YC, and that keeps me motivated, is the brotherhood that we share, it is beyond words. Simply the best company in town!”

Fiza Khan, the President of Youth Club Islamabad, shared her feelings with us:
“YC started as a dream, an aspiration for me. I remember making silly plans with friends to get our way into YC, after chasing around all their events around the city… YC was a motivation, a driving force for me when I was coming to the deen, a platform for me to channel my energies when I was trying to keep myself from channelling them for the negative… If I believed in their mission, I wanted to take it up as a personal responsibility and make my own little path. Never could I imagine, so soon will I get to be the one laden with the responsibility to manage the platform in such a capacity.
Youth Club has always been my happy place. It’s my go-to spot when I feel down, to work and feel that perhaps I’ve helped inspire a little positive change in the world… It’s where work feels rewarding, work feels fun, work always has room for creativity and experiment – and where work meetings feel like happy get-togethers because of the YC sisterhood.”

Zuha Bari, Social Media Manager of YC, said:
“The day I joined it, my life has never been the same!
Sometimes, I really wonder what would I’ve been doing with my life if YC wasn’t there!
…. YC has motivated me at every step. For me, YC is every thing…
My best moment of YC in 2016… when we gave a surprise to the world’s best ameer, And secondly (though it’s a bit sad too), we gave a surprise farewell party to our friend, sister and ex ameerah,… our hearts are always tied with the love of Allah, no matter how far we go from each other!”

Nadeem Ashraf, Ex-Operations Manager of YC who shifted to the UK in February, said:
“For me, the growth of YC in 2016 means the growth of dynamic style da’wah. In an increasingly doom and gloom world for the ummah around the world,the da’wah of YC comes as an increasingly breath of fresh air. As someone who is honoured to be in touch with many da’wah teams around the world, I receive glowing tributes from du’aat about YC’s unique style in the world of da’wah. 2016 has been a very positive year for team YC and as long as we are sincere, we can only go from strength to strength”.

Wrapping up YC’s 2016, in the words of the esteemed CEO, Raja Zia ul Haq:
“By the immense mercy of Allah, it is a matter of great satisfaction and joy to watch Youth Club, like a bright young child, growing bigger and stronger each year. I feel truly privileged to be a part of this wonderful organization; to be one of those who have dedicated their lives to bring about a positive change in society. Alhamdulillah, in the year 2016, we have visited hundreds of institutes, delivered over a thousand lectures, talks and workshops, and inspired countless individuals to transform their lives for the better.
May Allah accept from us and may He grant us the ability to continue on stronger.
In short; It’s been emotional!

I request you all to remember us in your duas. For indeed, some of our greatest achievements never make it to the internet.”

 

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This is not the whole story, it is only the first page. But it is the beginning of a beautiful journey, amid hopes and prayers, leading to what’s best out there inshaAllah :’)

Youth Club inspiring positive change!

 

 

 

Century Special: A Look Back (In Pictures)

Century Special: A Look Back (In Pictures)

A picture is worth a thousand words.  As a part of our century celebrations, here are some totally random Youth Club memories, with captions from the Blog Team. You can read “Century Special: A Look Back (In Words)” here.

Some prominent people whose interviews/stories etc. have featured exclusively on the blog include:

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Youth Club CEO, Raja Zia ul Haq  (obviously! Read here)

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The Pakistani Greek, Hamza Tzortzis (Read here and here)

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Yusuf aka Timothy Chambers (Read his journey here)

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John Fontain’s reversion story (Remember his beautiful azaan?)

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The inspirational Imran ibn Mansur aka Dawah Man (Read his interview here.)

One of our most popular themes remained:

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 Nazrein Neechay

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Even Batman got involved!

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And: LoveStruck! If you feel there’s too much love or too much mention of love here, that’s because it’s the YOUTH Club Blog. Makes sense?

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We don’t judge people, but sometimes they make their intentions all too clear 😉
Do you want to join Youth Club? This is for you.

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Ever seen our Dawah Wagon roaming around in your area!?

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Big or small, boys will be boys!

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Never a dull moment with the Youth Club Brothers..

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..Neither with the Sisters!

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But some moments are truly surreal!

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And some memories are simply beautiful!

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Brotherhood- The name of the restaurant says it all!

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Shoulder to Shoulder
One Master we serve,
One Mission we have

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The Street Dawah Team (Read some of their amazing articles on Islamic weddings, love and life)

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Heaven’s edge!
That’s Youth Club’s new basecamp in Pir Sohawa seems to be a writer’s haven and the perfect spot to get creative juices flowing.
Bloggers, rejoice! 😀

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Readers, your comments and feedback matter. Keep them coming!

Century Special: A Look Back (In Words)

Century Special: A Look Back (In Words)

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I’m sure all bloggers can relate to this: We feel excited every time we press ‘Publish’. Every time we do the tiny bit we can to inspire positive change. Every time, we add another drop to the ocean. Every post is reason enough to celebrate!

But when you reach 100 posts, that does call for something extra-special. TAKBEER!!!

On achieving this milestone, we at Youth Club Blog, express our gratitude to Allah Subhanahu wa Ta’ala . We also thank all our talented writers and amazing editors for bearing with us and meeting deadlines (most of the time!). And of course, how can we forget to thank you, our loyal and interactive readers? Without you, we might as well be speaking to the walls!

As our Century Special post, we present for you excerpts from blog articles that you liked and appreciated the most. Tomorrow, stay tuned for “Century Special: A Look Back (In Pictures)” as we refresh some random Youth Club memories inshaAllah!

Imagine seeing people of all ages and from various backgrounds smiling, crying and laughing all together. Imagine them realizing how each and every one of them has truly had a rich learning experience and many awe-inspiring moments by listening to world-famous speakers! Now imagine all of that happening in Pakistan!

(Ali Naqash, Winds of Change)

——

There were days when the Quran spoke to my heart. There were days when I felt infinitely blessed to be on this journey. There were days when opening the Mushaf would bring tears to my eyes. There were days when I felt that I could trade the entire world to continue with and complete my hifdh. Yes, there were beautiful days and nights. And then, there was that day- which is yet the happiest day of my life- when I finally completed the hifdh. I cannot even try to describe that day in words.

(Anonymous Hafidh, Slow and Steady- An Incredible Hifz Journey)

——

Sometimes when I’m alone, I let my imagination run wild,
My mind wanders through deserts, I let the sand be my guide
I hear the hooves of horses, impatiently stamping the ground
They wait for the command of the leader, awaiting just a sound

(Hajrah Khawar, Gone with the Wind)

——

However, no matter how long and bushy a brother’s beard is or how high he wears his pants, very few of them actually compromise on beauty and age of the girl, though they might eventually compromise on wealth and nobility, and even piety. Everyone wants to marry a Cinderella or someone who looks like a beauty queen from Hollywood.

(Fareed Ahmad, Looking for A Spouse: Great Expectations)

——

As I write this, the marquee next door reverberates with Bollywood beats accompanied by sounds of cheers – obvious signs of a wedding. It makes one wonder whether it is really worthwhile to spend one’s life savings on a circus show without giving deeper thought to the actual union between the two people?

(Mariam Riaz, Ramblings of a Closet Feminist)

——

That small, secret smile that was for your eyes to see, that subtle speech you thought only you could feel the ‘depth’ of, the preference for you over any other talking companion… we all like that, don’t we? Only, we don’t realise how short-lived such crunchy bits of life are, and how endless the pain they leave behind.

(Maryam Qadeer, “CHARGE,” says the Devil, and we do!)

——

When this man, who has waited patiently for a fulfilling gaze on this one woman, looks at his wife and when he sits with her, and talks to her; who can explain the incredible emotions that this person is feeling? I find it hard to believe that such strong and pure emotions can be felt by a man who has always been in company of non-mehram females, holding their hands, hugging them, talking to them, joking, and playing around with them.

(Mohammad Ali, The Barakahs of Islamic Injuctions)

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15. Go camping in the woods
16. Teach for free
17. Do archery while horse riding

(Nasser Ijaz Moghal, 20 things to do before you’re 25)

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Rest of my life? That’s a joke right? Because I’m 40 and my body has started to become weak now. I get tired easily. I can’t do the things that I “dreamed” of doing. What was the ease that I was looking for? Where is the “whole life ahead of me” that I was promised I would be able to enjoy?

(Omer Shahid, Work Hard for the Rest of Your Life)

——

I do truly believe that at some point in your life, you will map out a new constellation in the sky. You will meet a person who will make you feel whole again. Who will make your world go bright and starry. The one person you would want to sit with on the patio all winter and drink coffee. When you can talk about anything and everything. Or maybe not talk at all, just being with them gets you through the day. Your outlet for crazy fears, wildest obsessions and nonsensical string of babble. Your impossible plans and initiatives, and this person will dream your dreams.

(Saadia Humayun, Broken Hearts and Picture Frames)

——

Scene 3:
Slave: My Master! I love you so much, I can do anything for you.
Master: ((slaughter your son))
——————–
Slave: Son, I have been ordered to slaughter you.
Son: Do as you are ordered to do, Abbi!

( Umm ‘Aisha, Sacrifice Lovingly)

——

Hahaha! Some of the things I’ve been learning and having fun with (with my Hijab on) include cycling, dune-bashing, fishing, jet-skiing, yachting, camping, rifle shooting and hiking. I love to explore and travel across the length and breadth of Pakistan, as well as other countries. The hijab doesn’t restrict me from having the time of my life.

(Umm Ibrahim, 8 myths about my Hijab)

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It was like a gigantic wave of blood gushing in my aorta when I came close to him for the first time. I couldn’t resist the appeal to hold him close, embrace him against my chest, feel the raw aroma coming out of his body. I was feeling a unique warmth in both of us.

(Zaki Imtiaz, That strange little meeting..)

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Gets to campus.. Meets his mates! High fives as if they are Americans – accidentally happen to be in Pakistan(!). Gets invited to a party or 2.. Then talks about cricket.. “What a shot, what a chakka!!”.. Followed by “The government is so messed up man..” Followed by “Did you see that girl in that lecture?” ..

(YC Street Dawah Team, The 2013 Youth!)

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I flee from anything that would reconnect me to things from the past that were displeasing to Allah. I would rather be boiled in oil or shot in the head three times than go back to that lifestyle. Wallahi, I’m not even kidding. So I have absolutely zero regrets for the things I left behind.
(Blog Team, Point Blank: Interview with Raja Zia ul Haq)

——

Is there anything worth watching in dramas? Seriously, you tell me. I don’t watch dramas because it’s a pure wastage of time, and a believer’s time is too precious to be wasted in useless stuff.

(Blog Team, Exclusive Interview with ex-Actress Sara Chaudhry)

So you want to join Youth Club?

So you want to join Youth Club?

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Do you have what it takes to be a member of Youth Club?!

Youth Club does not have a Recruitment and Selection Campaign. Neither do we have such posters, like the above one, adorning the walls and newspapers. Yet, our members remain inundated with requests from people who want to join Youth Club, especially after a major event. These requests mostly come from the youth (obviously), but we have also been getting them from grandparents and pre-teen kids.

“How do I become a member?”

“I have filled in the registration form, now what?”

These are some of the typical queries that we usually get.

Here are some pointers and food for thought for the benefit of all those who would like to join the awesome-st organization in town.

1- Why do you want to join? What are your intentions? Is it so that the awesomeness rubs off, or is it the scrumptious, famed YC Biryani? 😉

Remember, YC is primarily a Dawah organisation. As we inspire positive change, we want to do it for the sake of our Creator and we want to remain sincere to Him.

2- What skills can you offer to help inspire positive change?

Think of your strengths and offer them. Are you good at creative writing, photography, graphic designing, cooking, teaching..? Do you have a smashing new idea for YC to implement?

3- Take the initiative. Most of our members are extremely proactive and creative. They have initiated some kind of productive activity in their own area or at their workplace or their educational institute. Look around you. How can you inspire positive change in your sphere of influence? Don’t sit around and wait for things to happen.

One simple example would be to form a buddy group which meets up once a week, perhaps at a Masjid or at somebody’s house. Watch and discuss a thought-provoking video or go through an inspiring book together.

4- Attend all the YC events. We have either monthly or bi-monthly events. Volunteer for them! Meet our members. Stay in touch.

5- Attend the weekly halaqahs taking place for sisters and brothers in different areas, whether they be at a university near you or at a particular venue. Make inquiries if you don’t know about them yet!

6- Harness the power of social media. Most of our marketing as well as a lot of Dawah work is done online. So you could be an avid sharer or a video expert. Use the various mediums to let people know about YC, and share in the reward.

7- Keep in touch with the current members. Brothers and sisters of YC are always busy with some project or the other. So come up to them and ask if you could help them with something. Don’t be shy! Our team is known to be friendly and courteous 🙂

8- Commitment and hard work– you must have these qualities engrained in you. The YC work is as tough as it is fun. The hard work remains hidden behind the scenes, while the glamour appears onstage! Our current members have families, some study full-time, others work full-time; they have all the burdens of a normal life. Yet when it comes to YC, they remain devoted and passionate, never putting the excuses of dunya before working for a noble cause, Alhamdolilllah!

The above include some of the ways how the current members got involved with YC. They didn’t send in resumes and appear for formal interviews!

Our primary purpose at Youth Club is to create and inspire dynamic and well-rounded personalities, who inspire positive change wherever they are. We wish to be Dawah-carriers and devout worshippers of our Supreme Creator. We organise events, share articles/videos/ thought provoking statuses and activities solely for the pleasure of our Lord. So even if you don’t become actual members, just become amazing, awesome, super-cool Muslims!

P.S. We also have a lot of stuff in the pipeline, lots of surprises to spring at you. So stay tuned and make Dua for us! 🙂
P.P.S. Let us know in the Comments if you found the pointers beneficial.

Message from the CEO

CEO Youth Club, Raja Zia-ul-Haq

CEO Youth Club, Raja Zia-ul-Haq

All praise is due to Allah, Lord of all worlds. We praise Him, we seek His help and we ask for His forgiveness. We seek refuge with Allah from the evil of ourselves and from the evil consequences of our evil actions. Whomsoever Allah guides there is none to misguide & whomsoever Allah leaves to go astray there is none to guide. And I testify and bear witness that there is no one worthy of worship except Allah – He is One and has no partners. And I bear witness that Muhammad (peace & blessings be upon him) is the servant of Allah and His final messenger.

Bismillah ir-Rahman ir-Raheem.

My dear brothers and sisters, we live in times when a lot of what we see in the media makes us hopeless. Be it corruption, crime, poverty, social injustice or intolerance. Even when some of us try to make a difference we either do not find enough support or perhaps the will power necessary to take a noble cause to fruition. Allah (SWT) tells us in the Qur’an:

إِنَّ ٱللَّهَ لَا يُغَيِّرُ مَا بِقَوۡمٍ حَتَّىٰ يُغَيِّرُواْ مَا بِأَنفُسِہِمۡ‌ۗ

“Verily! Allah will not change the condition of a people until they change what is within themselves.”

[Surah ar-Rad 13:11]

It is wisely said that even the greatest expedition to China starts with the first step. So the truth is, no matter how long the journey, no matter how daunting the task, the change begins with YOU.

Youth Club blog is just one avenue that will in-sha’Allah strive to inspire positive change, influencing the youth of our nation. We aim to motivate and encourage, to address prevailing issues, offering real and practical solutions, to educate our future leaders, to counter the negativity and to truly be a beacon of hope for all.

There is great mission that lies ahead of us, and if we won’t do our job, no one else will do it for us.

كُنتُمۡ خَيۡرَ أُمَّةٍ أُخۡرِجَتۡ لِلنَّاسِ تَأۡمُرُونَ بِٱلۡمَعۡرُوفِ وَتَنۡهَوۡنَ عَنِ ٱلۡمُنڪَرِ وَتُؤۡمِنُونَ بِٱللَّهِ‌ۗ

“You (the true believers) are the best of people ever sent forth towards mankind. You enjoin what is good, forbid what is evil, and you believe in Allah.”
[Aal-e-Imran 3:110]

Youth Club is reviving the spirit of Islam and connecting people to all that is good. We are re-establishing the “awesomeness” of the true Muslim; the one who practices Islam completely, whilst being a thorough professional in his own field, moving people as goes, bringing much benefit to those around him!

So what do you say, are you game? Do you want to be a part of the change?

Support our cause as best you can. With your time, efforts, energies, wealth or even if it just a pat on the back. People in this field need your prayers, support and encouragement.

May Allah guide us all to the straight path and may He always keep us under His infinite mercy and protection. Ameen!

Raja Zia ul Haq

CEO, Youth Club

From the Editorial

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Assalamu`alaykum warahmatullah all!

Welcome to our ‘official’ Youth Club blog!

InshaAllah the aim is to cultivate our aspiring young writers to use this as a means to disseminate quality knowledge to the world at large. As we are all new to the blogging world , please bear with us whilst we try and get things right! We will be posting articles, reviews of our now famous events, da`wah tips among other valuable bits of teaching from our glorious Deen!

So happy reading folks, and do always leave your comments at the bottom!

Jazakumullah khair!

THE YC BLOG EDITORIAL TEAM

CEO Youth Club

President Youth Club, Raja Zia-ul-Haq

CEO Youth Club, Raja Zia-ul-Haq

Founder of ‘Exploring Islam’ and CEO ‘Youth Club’, Raja Zia ul Haq is a prominent lecturer from Islamabad, delivering regular talks & workshops on Islam, life & purpose.

Watch Raja Zia ul Haq’s recorded lectures on YouTube, “Like” him on Facebook, and follow his awesome blog!

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