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PORTLAND -- Local Muslims gathered in downtown Portland Sunday for what organizers called a Day of Dignity.

Volunteers with Islamic Relief USA served hot meals and provided warm clothing and hygiene kits for the needy.

The annual event began after the 9/11 terrorist attack.

Organizers said they want people to know what local Muslims are truly about.

Volunteer Laila Hajoo hopes the organization's effort will help some people rethink their views of Islamic people.

When they see what s going on here it makes them think, you know, Oh, it s the American Muslims. They're doing this for people who are not Muslims. They're working with the Mormons, the Christians, the Jews, with atheists, with whomever. Maybe, I need to rethink about them, Hajoo said.

Volunteers included people of all faiths and several agencies not affiliated with any religious groups.

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