"I have visited WISE on a number of occasions since it first opened. I have always found the atmosphere very warm and welcoming from all those who visited the centre . The regular lectures and activities held at WISE have always been very benefiting for all ages groups, promoting individual responsibility and social justice. WISE has consistently worked hard to educate and inspire members of the local community. The charitable work programs that WISE has been involved in have benefited many people around the world who are living in despair. The continued hard work and effort by WISE and its attendees has been very supportive in promoting community cohesion and tolerance in High Wycombe. WISE is a beacon of success for the Muslim community in High Wycombe."
"WISE is one of the best Islamic Centres for learning in Buckinghamshire. One of the things about WISE that appeals me is their emphasis on teaching and educating the attendees about their own personal development and on treating other fellow human being kindly. Personally, by attending classes, lectures and seminars at WISE I have become more aware of community cohesion and to get involved in improving the wider community e.g. providing food to the homeless, contributing to local food banks and arranging dinner programs at the centre for negihbours. WISE has never been involved in hate preaching or in promoting violence, in fact WISE has been at the forefront of tackling terrorism by cooperating with the Police and local authority."
"I have been attending the WISE centre for nearly 2 years; I am 28 years old and have found WISE to be very welcoming and diverse organisation which has an outstanding record for being focused on community cohesion.
I am very impressed the way centre has been run. I have found it to be one of the very few places I have EVER been to that TRULY welcomes people from all backgrounds (and faiths).
Wise plays a vital role in our lives – Without it I know, I would be struggling in many fields of my life – but with the support of this outstanding organisation – I have managed to aim for a career (I am currently Supporting people with Learning Disabilities and have been learning British Sign Language), and explore some areas (and activities) of Britain that previously wouldn't of been possible due to my circumstances – such as trekking, visiting Wales, Camping, sitting around a camp fire, canoeing – all the little things that every British citizen should have experienced in their life – the same things that are missing in the Muslim community in general.
WISE has overcome these obstacles and has been their supporting us, whilst making it fun and very informative.
They have taught me the key values stressed in Islam on how important it is to respect your neighbour (after this I and my non-Muslim former neighbours became good friends, we used to invite each other for dinner, socialise and are still in touch, previously I never used to interact with them). WISE is far from teaching extremist views, in fact the Friday Prayer and Sermon is nearly always on how you shouldn't fight against the leaders, and always have patience through difficult times.
WISE also encouraged me to do community service, to be a part of the community that we live in, emphasised how much respect we should give others who have different faiths. After being taught all this WISE also organised for us to volunteer in a soup kitchen with a local Church group and regularly helping out at charity events. We also have plans to help the Elderly and this winter when it snows heavily. In short WISE is AMAZING!"
"I write as a convert to Islam of nearly 10 years. I moved to High Wycombe approximately 7 years ago from London and whilst I found the Muslim community to be very welcoming and kind, I was delighted to be introduced to WISE for several reasons which I hope to articulate below.
First, despite the diverse backgrounds of people from the community, the mosque leaders and Imam made an effort to ensure that all the talks, communications, including the Friday sermon were made in clear English. I had some experiences outside of London, because of mosques serving specific communities, where a proportion of talks would be in another language and WISE is very outward looking which brings me to my second point.
WISE has an extremely active community Programme provided for those that attend the mosque but also to serve the need to have a strong outreach to the wider community and create understanding, good community relations and cohension.
For those who attend the mosque, activities beyond prayers and Islamic education range from charity fundraising to scouts for children, mountain-biking and annual camping trips for families.
In terms of community cohesion, WISE engages fully. It opens its doors to anyone who wants to learn about Islam or the centre. It engages with other faith groups and issues invitations to non-Muslims to learn about fasting in Ramadan or Islam in general, usually done by attendees to their neighbours, colleagues, etc. WISE also frequently comments in the media on local issues.
All of this is done with the utmost professionalism.
Finally, and this is an important point that I feel compelled to make, during every engagement with the mosque and WISE management, there has been a consistent message that teaches Muslims to follow Islam according to authentic evidence, and a strong continual reminder of the wrongs of extreme and wrongful (e.g. violent) actions. This is a message opposed to the activities that have been recently reported in the press. The mosque teaches Islamic values - patience in adversity, having faith in Allah, positivity and the need to follow the law of the land. At no point have I ever encountered any extremist activity.
In conclusion, WISE is a wonderful organisation and I am so pleased and grateful to have access to it and to benefit from it. As a convert, I accepted Islam for what it truly is and not what others report it to be or indeed what others try to pass off as Islamic actions. I would not associate with any organisation that I felt did not fully strive to meet that criteria."
"I moved to High Wycombe 10 years ago and have got to know the members that run WISE over this time. One of the reasons that I attend the masjid is due to the holistic nature of the activities they run there. It is not just a place of worship but a central point of recreation, education, mentorship, youth development and community cohesion. There has always been an emphasis on reaching out to its neighbours and wider society, both muslim and non muslim. They always seemed to have good links to the council and local authorities to work to make the community stronger, together. The educational activities they organise deal with real questions posed by what is happening in the world today. Recently the CR-ISIS course they ran sought to educate all members of the community regarding this dangerous group in a comprehensive and academic manner. WISE has always been pro active in these matters and its very sad to see media smear campaigns that can only undermine the essential work they do."
"Having been with WISE for over ten years, I can safely say that WISE is an open, welcoming place full of kind people who encourage me to explore and learn more about Islam. From my childhood through to my adulthood I know I can rely on WISE to provide a safe, friendly, educational atmosphere, without any extreme or negative views, and this is what I value the most."
"The Wise mosque has been most beneficial to me. I moved to High Wycombe 7 years ago and did not know anyone. I had a child within the first year and hence became very isolated. The Wise mosque coffee morning's was brilliant to encourage me to get out, socialise and meet other women in the exact same situation as myself. I honestly have a lot to be grateful for from the Wise mosque. I have met and become life long friends with educated young professional women who are inspiring to be around. Jzk"
My family and I have been living here, in High Wycombe for nearly 12yrs and the masjid that we attend is the Wise Masjid. My husband is a white British revert and it's not easy to find a masjid that give lectures and classes in English nearby. Wise Masjid has given us that opportunity. Our children go to the classes there as well. The Wise masjid has been supporting the community of High Wycombe and the non muslims together, by providing so many charitable and social events such as coffee mornings where everyone (female)) is welcome/ sister's gathering/ family fun day/ picnic's in summer/ self defense class for sisters and many more. They have been supporting sisters who have been dealing with problems in marriage, financial and health matters. My girls love Wise Masjid as they do not hold any prejudice to anyone who goes there. Everyone is made to feel welcome at the Wise Masjid."
Alhumdillah I have been very fortunate enough to be able to use many of the services WISE Masjid has to offer.
The warm and inviting mosque made me feel very comfortable and at home.
I have been able to participate in boxercise classes, providing a secure private place to exercise with the added benefit of a crèche room upstairs at a very affordable price.
As a mother of young children WISE provided a place for me to meet other sisters and mothers. The coffee mornings allowed me to meet with them and be able have my children play happily along side us."