About the PFT Research Project
This research project was started by the Peaceful Families Taskforce, a program of API Chaya, and works in collaboration with members of Seattle Muslim communities and a University of Washington researcher. We are exploring ideas about how peace is cultivated in families and communities, based on respectful relationships and the role that masjids and Quranic models of peace can play in this process. In 2012-2013, we conducted interviews with masjid participants about their perspectives on peace-building. We are now launching an online survey component to this project, which is called “The Role of Masjids in Building Peaceful Communities.”
The survey will allow more community members to participate and share their perspectives in a convenient and anonymous format. In the current national climate, it’s more important than ever to strengthen community support systems. We hope gathering this information will allow masjid members to share their perspectives on peacefulness and will support peacebuilding work within and beyond our communities. Current events also demonstrate the value of sharing peacebuilding strategies cultivated in masjid communities with a wider audience that might learn from these strengths.
The goal of this research is to gather information to build a deeper understanding of how peaceful Muslim families take shape in America and how masjids, with their different strengths and assets, work to encourage and build peaceful families. Our hope is that this project will inform future mobilizing work in the Muslim community and among Muslim groups, as well as the work of advocates, educators, and researchers more broadly. We also hope this research might provide new insights for other faith-based communities and for general discussions about community response to and primary prevention of domestic abuse. We plan to then share the themes that come out of the research with national Muslim organizations like the Islamic Society of North America, Islamic Circle of North America, the national Peaceful Families Project, and other Muslim social service providers. In focusing on peace-building and assets, we hope this project will help bring recognition to the complexities within Muslim communities, which would contribute to countering the simplistic representations of Muslims often seen in national media. As Muslims and allies to Muslim communities, we want to be very careful not to perpetuate misconceptions about Muslim communities. It is also imperative that we find ways to discuss the specific forms of domestic abuse in our communities and the ways we can all support our Muslim brothers and sisters.
Research Participation and Confidentiality
We encourage all men and women in Seattle over the age of 18, who identify as Muslim and have attended a Seattle-area masjid to take our survey. Completing an online survey will take approximately 20-30 minutes to finish. This survey has about 35 questions, most of which are multiple choice, and include a small number of short answer questions. The questions cover various aspects of masjid community involvement and the building of peaceful families. There are no right or wrong answers to these questions. We encourage you to complete the full survey, however no questions are required. You can choose to skip any question.
All of the information you provide will be confidential. You are not required to provide any identifying information, but if you would like to do so or would like to be contacted by PFT, there is space to include your contact information at the end of the survey. If you provide any information identifying you as a survey participant, this information will be kept confidential during the duration of the study, and destroyed upon completion of the project (June 2017).
More Information on Research Project
In addition to this summary of the project, we have created an extensive FAQ section on this website to try and answer your potential questions about the research project. These address the history of API Chaya and the Peaceful Families Taskforce, as well as provide information about our work in local masjid communities. If you have additional questions, do not hesitate to contact any of the research team members or the current PFT Program Coordinator, Neelam Khaki.