What is a Food Desert?

A food desert is a geographical area where outlets that offer healthy, nutritious food such as groceries stores are absent. It could also include areas where travel to a grocery store is difficult, considered far, or unaffordable. Baltimore, like many other cities in the U.S., has several entire sections that are considered a food desert.

Food deserts impact the poor population the most, as they can only purchase junk food at high prices, and lack means of transportation to be able to travel to locations where grocery stores could be available.

Food Drive: Sunday March 24th, 2024 ~ Ramadan 14th, 1445

Our Collective Small Giving Could Literally Change a Life!

The need for food is very high in Baltimore. Out hotline receives many calls each week from families who have had nothing to eat for 2-3 days at a time. We are running an emergency food drive providing fresh cut chicken, spaghetti  and sauce to 60 families.

When: Sunday March 24th, 2024 ~ Ramadan 14th, 1445

Time: 1:00 pm EST

Where: Across from 3300 West Baltimore St, Baltimore, 21229

Learn more: Here!

Understanding the Importance of Halal Food Aid for American Muslims

New data from the Institute for Social Policy and Understanding’s American Muslim Poll 2022 shines a light on Muslims' dietary needs and preferences in the United States. This research underscores the importance of the work we do here at the Food Security Resource Center, and it guides us in ensuring our services are as adequate and relevant as possible. 

The key findings from the poll include:

These statistics highlight the need for food assistance programs to consider the dietary preferences and requirements of the communities they serve. For American Muslims, this often means providing halal options. As a community-focused organization, we address these needs in our food drives.

We urge our generous donors to consider these dietary preferences and needs when contributing food items to our drives. Providing halal food options is not just a matter of dietary preference but food security for many American Muslims.

Let's continue to work together to fight food insufficiency and ensure everyone in our community can access the food they need and prefer.

The project has benefited from grants from Baltimore Civic Fund, Hershey Foundation,  and the generosity of Muslim families and community members of the three Howard County Masjids, Dar Al-Taqwa, Muslim Family Center, and Maryum Islamic Center as well as Youth Crisis Line, a project of Islamic Leadership Institute of America which remains the main supporter and sponsor of the project.

The cost of food has skyrocketed over the past 12-months as noticed by the ILIA Food Drive team, in 2022 alone the project has spent over $14,000 on food supplies. A family bag used to cost us $35, today the same bag costs over $55 for the same quantities and quality staples.

Want to Volunteer?

We can always use the help of a few dozen extra hands :)

Here are some ways. Everyone is welcome to join and help out, especially elders and youth.


The monthly food drives are organized by the youth of Islamic Leadership Institute of America's leadership development internship program, #ILIAintern. Learn more about ILIA's young adult internship program by visiting https://internships.islamicleadership.org/


The monthly food drives are sponsored by Youth Crisis Line, a national Muslim operated crisis stabilization service of Islamic Leadership Institute of America, serving youth, schools and youth workers across America.

Youth Crisis Line handles a diversity of crisis types from mental health and suicidal thoughts, to bullying, homelessness, hunger, poverty, abuse and addiction. 

Learn more here.

To reach Youth Crisis Line:

Outreach Partners

The following organizations are supporting the outreach of the Rajab / February campaign through their email lists, social media and community member groups. Visit their websites to learn more.


This project could not have been possible without the advice and technical support of Dar us Salaam's Ansar Al-Birr.

Dar us-Salaam  based in College Park, Maryland, is committed to sharing the message of Islam with everyone through sincere action, by developing a model Islamic community open to all, based upon and adhering to the teachings of the Qur’an and Sunnah. Such a living, dynamic and vibrant Islamic community can invite people to Islam by example and not merely through word alone, with the help and permission of Allah. Dar-us-Salaam’s charitable and community services are open to all regardless of background. 

Former Funders

Baltimore Civic Fund

The Hershey Foundation

Visit Islamic Leadership Institute of America website to learn more about our youth development and leadership training activities and programs