A group of five Muslims from different backgrounds have come together to form an online community to develop an app and a website for Muslims to find prayer sites anywhere in France, where there is one mosque for every 1,200 Muslims, according to some estimates.
The online community, called Salat Surfing, connects people who want to donate space to Muslims in France for them to use for their five times a day mandatory prayers.
“Praying is a blessed link with our creator, a link with our Oumma! [Muslim Community] And what is better than act side by side in order to face hardship together? Create projects together or simply get to know each other,” said the group on their website.
Salat Surfing has listed almost 150 spaces throughout France and more than 2,500 people have joined the site since September.
“By no means do we want to replace mosques. The mosque's role is clearly identified in Islam's precepts,” said Yosra Farrouj, one of the founders.
“Salatsurfing is really an alternative in the way we allow someone to pray when a mosque is closed or there is no mosque around.”
Otmane Aziz, who donated his meeting room for prayers, said that this is just natural.
"It's a question of brotherhood, solidarity. To me, it seems right," Aziz said.