Within 48 hours of learning that Peterborough’s only mosque had been deliberately set afire, residents have rallied to restore the Muslim community’s place of worship.

The arson attack, which has been cited as a hate crime, is estimated to have caused up to $80,000 in damage. A crowdfunding campaign to rebuild the mosque has already raised over $71,000, with hundreds of people offering messages of support.

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“This is embarrassing and disgraceful behaviour that has no place in the world, let alone in Canada,” said one commenter, who donated $50. “I am deeply sorry and only hope the response of love will be greater than the response of hate.” Individual donations have been as high as $1,500.

“So extremely sorry and sad to hear about the destruction to your place of worship. Wishing you a quick and well-supported rebuild,” said another contributor.

Church groups in the area have also stepped up to offer Muslims space for worship until Masjid Al-Salaam, which translates to “Mosque of Peace,” is restored.

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