Fasting Sheffield families pledge support for Know Your Neighbour campaign

Ikram Rahman, aged 13, a pupil at Handsworth Grange Community Sports College, shares iftar with his neighbours  Jennifer and Raymond Needham as part of the Know Your Neighbour campaign.
Ikram Rahman, aged 13, a pupil at Handsworth Grange Community Sports College, shares iftar with his neighbours Jennifer and Raymond Needham as part of the Know Your Neighbour campaign.
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Muslim residents have not let the fact they are fasting for a religious festival stop them from feeding others and backing our campaign.

Mothiur Rahman and Noreen Khan are both refraining from eating and drinking from dawn till dusk each day as part of Ramadan, but they have still pledged their support for our Know Your Neighbour initiative and embraced the theme for this month, which is ‘feed your neighbour’.

Mothiur has already shared food with his next-door neighbours while Noreen has organised a party for hers to celebrate the end of the fast - which will come at the end of the month.

Mothiur Rahman, aged 46, who lives in Swallownest, said his family had been teaching his neighbours, Jennifer and Raymond Needham, about the annual Muslim festival.

He said: “Loving and knowing your neighbours with confidence is important.

“We are the only British Asian Muslim family in the area and we have been sharing our culture, traditions and customs during Ramadan. It’s certainly has put a smile on many peoples faces where we live.”

Ramadan, a month of daily fasting from early morning to sunset, is currently being observed by Muslims across the city, as well as all over the UK. It is expected to end on June 24.

Each day, the fast is broken at sunset with a meal called iftar, and last week the Rahman’s decided to share their food - rice, chicken tandoori and dates - with their new neighbours to welcome them to the area.

Mothiur’s son Ikram Rahman, aged 13, a pupil at Handsworth Grange Community Sports College, gave the food to the pair.

Proud dad Mothiur said the teenager was happy to share the food and also back our campaign.

He added: “Ikram feels this is an excellent exercise to build strong community links and promote integration and social inclusion.”

Noreen is planning on hosting an Eid party Eid on June 26, at Sheffield Wildlife Trust, Stafford Road, Manor.

Eid, or Eid al-Fitr, marks the end of Ramadan and sees Muslims come together to share feasts and sweets to mark the end of the fasting period.

Noreen, who lives on Stafford Road, has organised the celebratory event with her neighbours Nadia and Sadia Asghar.

Noreen said: “We have lovely neighbours, but we are all working and we never get a chance to socialise, so we have decided to go out on the street and celebrate Eid with them.

“We have sent invitations and invited all the families on our road. We are cooking Eid food and we will have tables and chairs out in the wildlife garden with bunting around. We are hoping to create a festive atmosphere.”

Radio station LinkFM, who are running the campaign along with us, are also asking people to donate an item of food which can be shared with a food bank.

If you are able to share food, please take it to the Pakistan Muslim Centre, Woodbourn Road.

Please share your stories and photos. Email Rochelle.Barrand@jpress.co.uk