Afghan refugees: Islamic Center of Milwaukee collecting donations

A huge outpouring for Afghan refugees, donations are being collected to help the more than 10,000 at Fort McCoy.

The need is great, and people across the Milwaukee area are stepping up to help. The Islamic Society of Milwaukee (ISM) is making sure the refugees are clothed.

Over the past three weeks, ISM has been collecting donations drop-offs to send to Fort McCoy.

"They are people in need. They are people literally coming with the shirts on their back," said Munjed Ahmad with ISM.

Inside an unassuming warehouse on Milwaukee's south side, strangers' kindness is on full display.

"You have some children’s clothing," said ISM's Othman Atta. "This box is almost filled out as well."

Islamic Society of Milwaukee donations for Afghan refugees at Fort McCoy

Twenty-four pallets with close to 200 boxes are filled with clothes. On Friday, Sept. 17, they will be loaded onto a truck headed for the western Wisconsin post.

"What it says is that we are sincere, that we care about each other and we’re united," said Ahmad. "We know that they’re in need of clothing and many items you and I take for granted."

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The clothing will first go to the Wisconsin National Guard Armory before making its way to Fort McCoy.

"It makes me very happy because it means that people really care," Atta said.

Islamic Society of Milwaukee

Collections will continue as long as the need is there – a show of support for those finding a new home.

"We’re asking our Greater Milwaukee community to come in and bring clothing, preferably new. We will take slightly used clothing as well," said Ahmad.

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"You really feel good when you know that people care and that this is going to go to people who need it," Atta said.

One of the biggest needs is for brand new women's undergarments. Things like toys, bedding and hygiene supplies are not needed.

Donations can be dropped off at 809 W. Layton on Thursdays from 5-7 p.m. and Saturdays from 1:30-4:30 p.m.

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