PETALING JAYA: The suspension of services at places of worship in many parts of the world due to Covid-19 has hastened the launch of the first global online platform for Muslims.
ImamConnect at www.imamconnect.com connects users to service providers of religious and non-religious services for Muslims.
Launched last August, its services include weddings, premarital counselling, wills and inheritance, funerals and Islamic studies.
With an initial list of over 70 background-checked service providers offering their expertise from around the globe, ImamConnect looks to grow its user and service provider base in Malaysia.
Malaysia is earmarked to be a regional centre for the platform as a Malaysian has played a pivotal role in its launch.
Zain al-Haddad, 37, a local law graduate in 2007, tells theSun how he was roped into the project. After running a communications agency for five years, he left Malaysia in 2014 to study Islamic knowledge in Tareem, Yemen, for five years.
During a semester break in 2015, he met the brainchild of the platform, a British Muslim entrepreneur Muddassar Ahmed, in London.
Zain was then attending an Interfaith Summer School Programme for Abrahamic Religions at Cambridge University.
“We met up again in late 2019,” Zain said. “I started researching on the IT side as well as our potential markets, speaking to imams, charitable organisations, mosques, researchers and homes.”
Muddassar told theSun more than US$400,000 had been spent to build the platform. It has now over 100 registered service providers and more than 700 users worldwide.
He said ImamConnect aims to easily and conveniently connect people with reliable, trustworthy providers at any time of day or night.
“No more waiting around for someone to get back to you with options or contact information. A simple interface and clear lists of categories and qualifications make the search fast and effective,” he said.
“Transparent reviews help people make an informed decision and our secure payment process ensures a hassle-free transaction. As a provider of Muslim services, ImamConnect allows people to offer their unique skills and proficiency to a wide and receptive audience.
“ImamConnect is open to anybody searching for or offering Muslim services. People from different religious backgrounds can also book services on our platform, such as informational events, talks and lectures to learn more about Muslim religious practices and the Muslim community.”