Abdul Hai Patel

Country of Origin:

India

Themes:

Citizenship, Immigration, Asian Heritage, Racism/Discrimination, Human Rights & Social Justice, Multiculturalism & Diversity, Adjusting to Life in Canada

Photos:

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Bio

Imam Abdul Hai Patel is founder and immediate past Coordinator of Canadian Council of Imams, representing the Islamic religious leadership. Currently, he is Director of Inter Faith relations. He has been serving as Imam and Community Leader for 43 years in Canada.

He served as a Commissioner of Ontario Human Rights Commission from 1999-2005.

He is past member of National Board of Governors of Scouts Canada.

He is President of Ontario Multi Faith Council

He serves on two committees of Toronto Police Service:

• Chief’s advisory Council

• Member and past Co-Chair of Muslim Consultative Committee.

He is a Muslim Chaplain at the University of Toronto, York Regional Police and CAM-H (Centre for Addiction & Mental Health).

He is a member of Interfaith advisory Committee of Federal Gov’t’s Corrections Canada.

He is a member of Canadian Association of Police Chaplains.

He is a Founder,Director and Patron in Chief of Muslim Children Aid and Support Service.

He is Director of Ansaar Foundation for addressing poverty & homelessness in Toronto.

He is Chair of Flemingdon Community Food Bank

He is member of Equity Policy Advisory Committee of Toronto District School Board;

He is member of GTA Toronto Civic Action Alliance, studying transportation needs of GTA.

He has served in various capacities on Boards of Hospitals, Social Services and Community Legal Clinics and International development and relief organizations.

Recipients of Governor General and Ontario Government’s awards for Community Service & Queen’s Diamond Jubilee medal;

Recipients of Honorary Doctorate degree from Canadian Institute of Islamic Studies.

Story

I was born in India, left India at age 12. Went to Barbados, to join my father who migrated there in 1934. I had my primary education in India, where I learnt three languages: Gujarati (mother tongue), Urdu and Hindi. I had my high school in Barbados. I came to Canada in 1969 as a student, to study Electronic Engineering. I also studied Business Administration and Alternative dispute Resolution and numerous computer courses. I worked full time in engineering and in IT. I took early retirement in 2005 at age 57. I also served as Commissioner with Ontario Human Rights Commission from 1999 to 2005.

I am a Muslim and have been serving as volunteer Imam for 43 years. My passion is serving humanity and this is why, I have and still serving on many Boards of Community organizations, especially, helping new comers to Canada.

As a faith leader, I conduct prayer service and provide guidance in religious matters to Muslims and engage in building bridges among various faiths through Inter faith activities. I also conduct sensitivity training on Religion and Culture to Employers, Schools, and Government Institutions.

Being a Canadian, give me pride and sense of belonging to a great Country, that has provided opportunities for Immigrants for better life and a safe heaven for refugees, irrespective of race, religion and nationalities. I strive to promote responsible citizenship among all new comers and promote civic engagement.