Muslims open Astoria center

Michael Gianaris

February 13, 2012

The Times Ledger reports on the opening of the Muslim American Society's community center. Senator Gianaris spoke at the event and he believes these community centers are important for the future immigrant generations moving to the neighborhood.

Astoria has long been defined by its ethnic groups — first it was the Italians, then the Greeks — and last week the neighborhood’s Muslims took a large step toward establishing themselves with the grand opening of the Muslim American Society’s community center on Steinway Street.


MAS is a nationwide, nonprofit, religious, social and cultural organization, and for years the Queens chapter operated out of the Dar Al-Dawah mosque at 35-13 23rd Ave.


Community leaders gathered Friday evening at the new 3,200-square-foot center just south of 25th Avenue, which offers programs on education, community service and youth development.


Ahmed Jamil, president of the community center, said its focus is to lift up the individual, family and society for every New Yorker — both Muslim and non-Muslim alike.


State Sen. Michael Gianaris (D-Astoria) and state Assemblywoman Aravella Simotas (D-Astoria) spoke about the difficulties immigrant communities face when trying to become assimilated and offered to help the Muslim community access government.

Read the full article here.