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Muslim women don pink hijabs to raise money for breast cancer awareness


(RNS) ó Hend El-Buri began wearing a hijab, or headscarf, in middle school. After eight years of watching non-Muslims warily eye her devout attire, she joked with some veiled friends that it might finally break the ice if they all wore bright pink hijabs to their University of Missouri classes one day.

The wardrobe whim has evolved into a national campaign involving thousands of other Muslim coeds, simultaneously aiming to tear down interfaith social barriers and raise money for breast cancer research.

The 20-year-old college junior created a group on Facebook, a social networking website, proclaiming Oct. 26 as National Pink Hijab Day. More than 6,500 participants signed up, including young Muslim men who wore rosy caps or shirts to show solidarity.

As a nod to Octoberís designation as Breast Cancer Awareness Month and Islamís requirement of making charitable donations, participants were asked to give at least $5 to Susan G. Komen for the Cure, a nonprofit organization dedicated to breast cancer research.