Bernadette Mill, Bernadette Mill   20 May 2020

Two muslim women greeting at the door with a husband in a bacground

Making sure you can support your loved ones is why we exist! We understand the importance of solidarity so want to make it as easy as possible for you to also lend a helping hand to the less fortunate during the holy season of Ramadan and Eid.

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Ramadan is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar which commemorates the holy book (Qu’ran) being revealed to the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). As one of the five pillars of Islam, Ramadan is often described as the most important month in the Islamic lunar calendar. The first sighting of the new moon marks the beginning of a whole month of abstinence where observers must not eat or drink during daylight hours.

Social distancing rules have stopped people from gathering for Tarawih the special evening prayer, which is a key theme throughout the days of Ramadan. In the Middle East where some mosques are open, the faithful have been advised to keep a distance of two-metres apart and use their own prayer mats. The centres for disease control and prevention continues to advise people to self-isolate and quarantine if they have symptoms – a practice introduced to the world by the Muslim scholar Avicenna.

Eid al Fitr is the festival marking the end of Ramadan and begins one day after the sighting of the new moon on the first day of Shawwal. The festival lasts for 3 days where many observant Muslims donate to charity and send money or gifts to their loved ones as part of the festivities. As Shawwal is a month of celebration, many Muslims prefer to do Zakat (charitable giving) before and during Eid.

We spoke to a couple of our customers who are fasting under lockdown.

Here are their stories.

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Abdallah, London

“The coronavirus has changed everything. In previous years, all families would meet each other to pray and break the fasts together. Ramadan 2020 is very different. Praying in the mosque together for the night prayer is a big part of the holy month. Now there’s no meeting any family or friends at all. No going to the mosque for normal prayers, but also not being able to go for special evening prayers. Most mosques would have hosted iftars which are so important to migrant workers and asylum seekers as they are often far from their loved ones. There was so much socialising after night prayers, visiting bazaars and generally seeing everyone. There’s none of that now!"

"Ramadan used to bring so many of us together. Normally I would have so many brothers around in the masjid. Now, it’s just me. I facetime my cousins in Bangladesh for iftars so that I don’t feel as lonely. I always send them money via the WorldRemit app during Eid, it’s so easy and one less thing to worry about. Being reminded that lockdown is needed for safety motivates me to keep going. All for the greater good. The true essence of Ramadan is to get closer to God. Keeping this in mind helps lift my spirits.”

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Amira, Toronto

“We are unable to visit or see family members who live in different households to celebrate this special month as we normally would. Fasting during Ramadan whilst in lockdown and without family members that don’t live with you has been so difficult. Not being able to attend congregational prayers in our local mosque is also really hard. This is my first Ramadan as a married woman, living with my husband and being away from my parents and siblings."

"Culturally, when it’s your first Ramadan being married, family and friends host iftar dinners for you. Unfortunately, we’re missing out on spending iftars with them. My husband and I choose to do our Zakat during this holy season. WorldRemit has made it much easier and faster! Our relatives in Pakistan have so many payment options for the donations that don’t involve leaving their houses, which has given us much needed peace of mind.” 

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We know how important it is to support those less fortunate during this season and offer a number of international money transfer options including:

How WorldRemit supports communities in Pakistan this Ramadan

WorldRemit and Edhi Foundation have once again partnered to provide meals to people in need during Ramadan. Edhi Foundation is the largest social welfare organisation in Pakistan, helping those in need across education centres and providing shelter to the homeless. Every time a customer sends money to Pakistan, WorldRemit purchases a free meal for someone in need via the Edhi Foundation.  

 “Ramadan is a time for giving - a time when we think about those who have so much less than ourselves. So, in that spirit of generosity we’ll be making these donations on behalf of our customers”, said Ruzan Ahamed, Country Director for Pakistan at WorldRemit

Muhammad Farooq, Chief Accountant at Edhi Foundation added; "We would like to thank WorldRemit for their donations to our free meal services. It provides great help to the homeless, poor and those in need which is even more important now that most businesses are closed due to the pandemic".

During these uncertain times, it is more important than ever to stay connected to our loved ones and support those in need.

We would like to wish all of our customers Eid Mubarak.

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