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Muslim benefactor will match contributions to Mormon church's typhoon relief

Published: Monday, Nov. 25 2013 5:10 p.m. MST

Food and supplies are unloaded from a military transport plane in Tacloban, Wednesday, Nov. 20, 2013, following a typhoon in the Philippines. Passengers were later loaded and allowed to ride to Cebu.

Ravell Call, Deseret News

SALT LAKE CITY — An anonymous donor in Utah’s Islamic community will match donations up to $100,000 for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ typhoon relief efforts in the Philippines.

Donations can be made at any Zions Bank branch or through the Islamic Society of Greater Salt Lake City.

“We have a deadline until this Friday to collect whatever we can collect. We need a lot of help. He’s (the anonymous donor) going to match whatever we collect up to $100,000. At this Thanksgiving time, it would be really great if every community could help us,” said Aden Batar, president of the Islamic Society of Greater Salt Lake City.

LDS Humanitarian Services has been providing direct aid to typhoon survivors since the waters receded after the superstorm on Nov. 8.

Government sources say Typhoon Haiyan killed more than 3,600 people and 1.9 million are homeless.

“It’s devastating. People don’t have shelter. There’s still a shortage of food and all the basic supplies,” Batar said.

Bruce Muir, director of Church Emergency Response for the LDS Church, said in times of need, the church responds to disasters with materials and manpower. “Those efforts are enhanced when communities come together for the benefit of others,” Muir said in a prepared statement from the Islamic Society.

The Islamic Society of Greater Salt Lake City regularly partners with the LDS Church on other humanitarian issues, Batar said.

“We as Muslims have a responsibility to help people in need," Batar said. "I know there are people of many faiths in that country. We are helping because we are all children of God and we want to help them.”

Donations can be made online through the donation button at www.utahmuslims.com, or through the Islamic Society of Greater Salt Lake Donation fund at any Zions Bank.

For more information, contact Batar at adenbatar@msn.com or 801-859-6987.

Email: marjorie@deseretnews.com

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