Aidil Adha Exchange


It is a day when Muslims remember the “almost sacrifice,” according to Islamic Scriptures, of Ishmael by Ibrahim on Mount Moriah in the vicinity of Mecca. Muslims believe that God commanded Ibrahim to sacrifice Ismael to test him, and he passed the test by being willing to obey even such an extreme command. But then, according to two stories believed by Muslims, God either changed Ishmael with a sheep or commanded Ibrahim to stop and replace Ishmael with a healthy sheep.

For four days, beginning on the 10th day of the month of Dhul-hijja, the final month on the Islamic calendar, Muslims all over the world celebrate the “sacrifice” of Ishmael. In Malaysia, as in most Muslim countries, it is a national holiday.

Officially, the date is declared in Malaysia by the moon-sighting committee on the first day of Dhul-hijja, for only then can the exact date of the holiday be determined, owing to its being on a lunar-based calendar. The announcement can be heard on both TV and radio nationwide.

In general, people celebrate by rising early to pray, going to mosque to hear a sermon, wearing new clothes, visiting family and friends, and eating a large, festive, meat-heavy meal. A goat or sheep may also be sacrificed, some of the meat or an equivalent amount of money being given to the poor so they can celebrate Hari Raya Haji as well. Mosques may also be decorated with lights, gifts may be exchanged, and fire crackers are sometimes set off at night. Non-Muslims are frequently invited to meals as a way to introduce them to Islamic culture.

To fulfil one of the Five Pillars of Islam, some may also go on pilgrimage to Mecca to perform the Hajj, but only those who can afford the trip are required to go.

Hari Raya Aidil Adha Domestic Exchange (DOMEX)

Program Description

In conjunction with the 60th Anniversary of AFS Malaysia last year, we launched a new program called The Domestic Exchange (DOMEX) Program which is a 5-day exchange program for Malaysian participants in Malaysia. In November, the first five DOMEX participants went on their exchange for the Deepavali celebration, another five participants went on for the Christmas cycle in December and latest, five participants went on for the Chinese New Year in February. DOMEX participants live with host families and experience what it is like to be a Malaysian from the perspective of others. During the program, participants take part in cultural activities and learn more about the religion, culture, practices, aspirations and value systems within the diversity that Malaysia has to offer.

With the upcoming Malaysian festival of Hari Raya Aidil Adha, we are delighted to open this program in conjunction with the celebration.

This program is fully sponsored by AFS Malaysia during the pilot phase. We are looking for 5 participants to join the program. The program is open to AFS Malaysia volunteers and the general public. Participants will join activities organized by AFS Pahang Chapter and have the chance to celebrate Hari Raya Aidil Adha.

Please note that participants are required to attend orientations on 9,10 and 14,15 August 2019 at the designated place.

Program Timeline

Date/Day Event
9-10 August Pre-Departure Orientation

Arrival of participants in Pahang

Host family handover

10-14 August Activities by Pahang Chapter
14-15 August Departure of participants to Kuala Lumpur

Post Return Orientation


  • 15-20 years old
  • AFS Volunteers & open to public
  • Those who do not celebrate Hari Raya
  • Those who are not from the hosting state


If you wish to apply for this unique AFS Program, please fill out the link by 8.00 p.m. on Monday, 29 July  2019. Please contact [email protected] for any inquiries. 

Application Form