Alhaj Mustafa Bhai G. R. Jaffer - A Philanthropist and Social Worker

A man with deep devotion to faith and dedication to the community, Alhaj Mustafa Bhai G. R. Jaffer has more than half a century of philanthropy and public service to his credit. Alhaj Mustafa Bhai was born in Zanzibar, Tanzania (East Africa) on January 17, 1932.  He began his career by working for the Zanzibar Government Treasurer’s office along with Oman Sultan’s son, Sheikh Mohamed from 1951 to 1964.  After the revolution in Zanzibar in 1964, he worked with the Ministry of State and was in charge of state functions at the State House in Zanzibar, hosting government and religious dignitaries.  All along, he served the Khoja Shia Ithna-Asheri Jamaat in Zanzibar, under various sub-committees. He was instrumental in assisting Khoja families to migrate from Zanzibar to Dar-es-Salaam in 1964 and 1965. His efforts helped our community enormously, especially during the time of infamous force marriages in Zanzibar. Mustafa Bhai also served as the treasurer of Milad-un-Nabi association and was the Government spokesman for welfare programs after the Zanzibar revolution until 1974.

Mustafa Bhai migrated to Dar-es-Salaam in 1976 and worked with the Zambia Copper Industry in accounts payable while also serving as a social worker in the Dar-es-Salaam Jamaat.  After a brief stay in Dar-es-Salaam, he migrated to the USA in October 1976 and served as the New York Jamaat President for more than 10 years.  During his tenure, he was instrumental in raising funds for building the Husseini Center in Queens, NY.  He was also a Trustee of the Muslim Foundation in the USA.  He was also nominated by the Marja at the time to serve as a Trustee of the NY Al-Khoei Foundation.
 
On a global perspective, he served for many years as an Executive Councillor for NASIMCO and the World Federation of KSIMC. He worked very closely with Marhum Mulla Asghar M M Jaffer and travelled with Mulla Saheb to many parts of UK, Canada, Africa, India, and Pakistan for social, religious and welfare services of our communities.
 
Today, numerous organizations of our communities  in North America owe a great deal of gratitude for his support and guidance as more and more members started settling in the USA and needed Shia Centers and other communal facilities. A historical and important factors often gets overlooked is that there are many unacknowledged and unsung personalities today whose devotions and sacrifices in the late sixties and seventies have resulted in the present generations enjoying the facilities and services. Alhaj Mustafabhai G. R. Jaffer was amongst the leading personalities of that era in North America whose contributions remains forever etched in the annals of history of the Community.
 
The Following awards have been bestowed on Mustafa bhai: 

  • 2014 Lifetime Community Services Award for Building a Peaceful Community by the Muslims for Peace.org.
  • 2016 - The Khawabe Khidmat (Star of Service) Award by the Mulla Asghar Memorial Library and Resource Centre for his Exemplary Long Community Services 

He currently serves as the Chairman of the Jaffer Family Foundation in New York, a charity organization focusing on the eradication of poverty, education, medical treatment, vocational training, and housing for the needy in several parts of the World.
 
The Jaffer Family tradition of charity and service emanates from the legacy left behind by Alhaj Mustafa Jaffer’s father, Marhum Gulamhussein Rajabali Jaffer, who rendered services to the community especially the youth of Zanzibar - May Allah (SWT) bless his soul.  When asked about his motivation for his social services, Alhaj Mustafa Jaffer explains that his father, an avid lover of the Ahlul Bayt (A.S.), set the bar high and was a big influence on his life.  Alhaj Mustafa Jaffer prays the practice of serving humanity will continue to be upheld by his children and grandchildren.
 
We pray to Allah (SWT) by His grace and mercy to grant Mustafa bhai Jaffer good health, long life and to continue his services. Let us also remember and recite Sura-e-Fateha for the maghferat of all the past community members who have served in different areas and contributed their valuable time and resources to the Community in Africa and in different parts of the World during their life time.
 
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25th January 2019 (18th Jamadi-ul-Awwal 1440 AH)

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