LONDON: Barnardo’s, the UK’s largest children’s charity, celebrated Eid with a special dinner, to mark the end of the Islamic month of Ramadan.
The meal was attended by Barnardo’s Chief Executive Javed Khan and an array of popular celebrities and media personalities from the British Asian community who took part in #FastForADay.
Participants in the campaign included British boxing champion Amir Khan, Pakistani music star Rahat Fateh Ali Khan, YouTube star Humza Arshad, Bhangra music star Juggy D, British R&B star Arjun, BBC presenter Sonali Shah, Sky News’ Ashish Joshi, BBC Asian Network’s Panjabi Hit Squad, urban music star Mumzy Stranger and presenters Anushka Arora and Natasha Asghar.
Attending the Eid dinner last night were more of the campaign’s participants such as chart-topping music producer Naughty Boy, Hijabi model Mariah Idrissi, British Bhangra star H-Dhami, ‘Bend It Like Beckham’ and ‘Eastenders’ actor Ameet Chana, TV and radio presenter Suzi Mann, comedian Islah Rahman, stylist Anisha Vasani and fashion designer Saran Kohli.
#FastForADay, a month-long campaign during Ramadan, was an initiative to highlight some of Barnardo’s important work with children from all communities and faith groups.
The campaign saw British Asian celebrities and media personalities from all faiths participate in fasting for a day during the Islamic month of Ramadan which sees millions of British Muslims fast from dusk till sunset for a period of 30 days. Their unique experiences of fasting and Ramadan were shared on social media.
Music producer Naughty Boy said: “Thank you to Barnardo’s for asking me to take part in #FastForADay. I think it’s an important initiative to create awareness about Ramadan and what the month truly means and represents, in particular charity and giving.”
Actor Ameet Chana added: “I have many Muslim friends and colleagues who observe Ramadan every year and this was my first year to join them for just a day of fasting. It was definitely a challenge but also a cleansing experience, something I would look to do every year. It was a pleasure working with Barnardo’s on this great initiative and helping to raise awareness for some of the work they do amongst diverse communities across the UK.”
Barnardo’s is committed to reaching out to more diverse communities. #FastForADay was part of Barnardo’s ‘Time for Family’ campaign which aims to raise awareness of Barnardo’s work within the Asian community, including support for disabled children.
Barnardo’s wide range of disability support services include the Cygnet Service that works with South Asian families in Bradford providing an award-winning parenting support programme for children on the autistic spectrum, and the ‘Apna ‘Centre’ in Glasgow which supports hundreds of disabled BAME children and their families.
Ramadan signifies a month of charity and giving, with British Muslims donating in the region of £100m every year, making them the single most charitable faith group in the country. The celebration of Eid (or Eid-ul-Fitr) marks the end of the month of Ramadan.
Javed Khan, Chief Executive, Barnardo’s said: “I am delighted to be sharing an Eid meal to mark the end of Ramadan with some fantastic individuals from the British Asian community, from all faiths, and thank them for being a major part of Barnardo’s increased activity this month to raise awareness for some of our key projects and services for the UK’s black and minority ethnic communities. #FastForADay has highlighted commitment, dedication, faith, sacrifice and of course charity – all of which make the month of Ramadan an incredibly special time for British Muslims all over the country.”
Last year 2017-2018 301,100 children, young people, carers and parents were supported by Barnardo’s through more than 1,000 services across the UK, such as young carers, care leavers, foster carers and adoptive parents, training and skills or parenting classes.