Ismaili Jamatkhanas foster an appreciation of pluralism and serve as a perfect venue for sharing the Ismaili Muslim identity and community values with the greater community. Events hosted at the Jamatkhana stimulate the intellect, encourage dialogue, and celebrate cultural diversity in the Greater Atlanta Area. They are often also used to host government and community leaders to enhance relations and find pathways for civic engagement.

United States Senator for Georgia, David Alfred Perdue Jr., recently visited the Atlanta Ismaili Jamatkhana in Decatur and was welcomed by leaders of the local Ismaili community for a luncheon. He enjoyed a tour of the Jamatkhana space and called the visit a “connection of spirits.”

The value that the Ismaili community and the Aga Khan Development Network places on the intellect and education resonated particularly strongly with Senator Perdue, as his mother is a school teacher.

Before diving into politics, Senator Perdue was a Fortune 500 CEO and his work often took him around the globe. During one such trip, he stayed at the Serena Hotel in Lahore and was pleasantly surprised to learn that the hotel falls under the Aga Khan Development Network’s arm for economic development.

The Jamatkhana in Norcross, Georgia, separately hosted Gwinnett County Commissioner Ben Ku. Commissioner Ku was recently elected to the office, and while he had previously visited the Jamatkhana for a candidate forum, he used this visit as an opportunity to learn more about the Ismaili community that resides in his district. Commissioner Ku is a grandson of Chinese immigrants and one of his goals is to ensure that minority voices are heard in local governments. He joined Ismaili community leaders in a discussion on how to better engage citizens from diverse backgrounds into leadership positions and boards within the county.