Support during Ramadan from Islamic community available to all in St Albans

PUBLISHED: 14:41 04 May 2020 | UPDATED: 14:41 04 May 2020

St Albans children take part in the service provided during Ramadan. Picture: Raihaanah Ahmed

St Albans children take part in the service provided during Ramadan. Picture: Raihaanah Ahmed

Archant

Ramadan during lockdown is going to be a difficult time for St Albans Muslims with mosques being closed and extended families separated.

Trustee of Sopwell Community Trust Raihaanah Ahmed said: “Ramadan this year will be the hardest in living history - fasting for 16 hrs daily for a month in isolation will be incredibly testing.

“This is the first time I will not be spending the period with my parents. Ordinarily we would share information via the Arabic school and mosques.”

She explained that sometimes families do not access services unless they know somebody involved in the delivery and so she has picked out key community members and circulated a go-to guide for support services on Facebook.

There are more than 20 BME charities working in St Albans and some are not very well known.

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The COVID-19 St Albans response group list includes a service delivering emergency food packs accessed through three different phone numbers. There is also a PPE supplies community system in place. Additionally, there is a telephone number of where to get help with Muslim burials and Islamic funerals at this difficult time.

There is a wide range of support around other difficulties people might be facing, such as prescription collection, benefits guidance, tenancy issues, homeschooling advice and ways to stay informed of important information about the festival.

The 37-year-old of Taylor Close added: “It is customary for Muslims to be discreet in their charity work and this is often missed; we’re encouraging residents to share their acts of kindness with us via Ramadan random acts of kindness.

“Additionally, we’re hoping this will inspire others to reach out to neighbours and friends to spread a little cheer.”

They are also having a competition where children across the district can put a lantern in their window to symbolise light, an inclusive sign of hope for people in these dark times.

To find out more about community support during Ramadan and beyond visit the Sopwell Community Trust Facebook page.

St Albans has a vibrant diverse community of Muslims and support services are inclusive to all, regardless of their faith background.


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