Mission & Vision:
At Stones to Bridges, Our Vision is to support Muslim youth address the struggles they face.
Our Mission at Stones to Bridges is to address the pressures and support the needs of, but not limited to, Muslim youth in North America, as a means to promote their emotional, social, and mental well being. We intend to address these needs through a variety of avenues, by developing a platform where youth can freely and comfortably express and address their struggles and concerns.
Further, we aim to develop programs for Parent /Community Awareness and Outreach to ultimately empower the youth by creating an environment in homes and the community that promotes the emotional, social and mental well being of Muslim youth.
The Stones to Bridges initiative began in 2010 by a few individuals who had worked with youth in various capacities over the years. Through each of their personal experiences with the youth, they constantly saw the struggles and issues youth were facing in all parts of the country, with no place to openly and comfortably express or address their issues. They were individually disheartened by the lack of support that existed to help youth rise up against issues such as lack of self-worth, peer-pressure, heart break, self-harm, abuse, family and cultural struggles, etc. Though these individuals were from various parts of the country and didn’t know one another (but came together as part of a Higher plan), they knew something had to be done!!
They decided to start their efforts with their own community first, since as they say, charity begins at home. Thus began the initiative to start with catering services geared towards Muslim American youth, with the desire to target all Muslim American youth, from those who were simply born into Muslim families but don’t identify with the religion, to those who incorporate Islam in their daily lives; from those who may be engaged in taboo activities like drinking, drugs, sexual activities outside marital bonds, etc, to those who pray five times a day, fast regularly, attend Islamic lectures, etc. No matter what the lifestyle activities or habits the individual had, this group of individuals wanted to offer a place for these youth to express and address their issues they faced as a means to promote their emotional, social and mental health and well being.
They inquired of their contacts across the country and searched the web extensively to see if organizations existed in North America to provide Muslim American youth a place to openly and freely express the struggles and issues they face, without fear of judgement, and also receive the support they needed to address and overcome these barriers in a way that would empower them rather than hold them back.
They originally named the organization Nur Youth Forum as they had hoped to become a means of spreading nur, or light, in the path of the youth. In 2012, they launched their first project, www.NYFOnline.org which, by the grace of Allah, was even more beneficial to the youth than they had anticipated. Since the launch, they engaged with various youth and heard feedback, which oftentimes included much confusion regarding the name (since again, much of the target audience did included all Muslim American youth, including those who are unfamiliar with Arabic terms). The search and iterations of surveying the youth for a new name for the organization began. Through collaboration of everyone’s ideas and suggestions came the name: Stones to Bridges, with a tag line of When Life Throws You Stones, Build a Bridge.
Now the vision continues…to build bridges that improve the lives of, but not limited to, Muslim American youth, by establishing foundations to support them in the struggles they face and empower them to turn their Stones to Bridges.