Ramadan is one of the holiest months in the Islamic calendar and an opportunity to bring Muslims together from all over the world. Whether you are in China, India, or Scotland and regardless of background and wealth – for Ramadan you are all fasting together.
The word Ramadan itself refers to the name of the month. It is considered to be the holiest month because it was during Ramadan when the Prophet Muhammad initially received the divine revelation of the Quran. Ramadan is also one of the five pillars of Islam, which are five key rulings from Allah.
During Ramadan, Muslims fast from sunrise until sunset, adjusting their meals to an early meal before dawn called suhoor or sehri and a meal after the sunset called iftar or fitoor. It is a family and community orientated time, with people coming together to pray and break their fast at the end of the day.
Ramadan runs for 30 days each year, in 2021 it starts on 12th April and ends on 11th May. Ending the fast is celebrated with Eid al-Fitr, which will take place on 12th May.
Here are three ways to support your employees throughout Ramadan:
- Where possible, allow for flexible working – whether that is allowing employees to start work earlier and finish earlier, or allowing people to work their daily hours flexibly. Speak to your employees about how they would like to work during Ramadan, everyone will have different preferences.
- Allow space and time for prayer and reflection. Prayer is a key part of religious life, but it is particularly important for Muslims during Ramadan. Find a quiet place where your employees can go and pray without being disturbed.
- Screen breaks are more important than normal during Ramadan as fasting means no water as well as no food. Put things in place so that people can take 5–10-minute breaks to get away from the screen.
Eid is a major Islamic holiday and a community and family celebration marking the end of Ramadan. It is also the most important time in the month for someone to go to the Mosque.
It can be difficult, as the date changes each year to guarantee annual leave but where possible allow people to take it as holiday.
Additional resources: FA guidance for sport
The FA have published guidance to support participants and employees across the footballing community during the holy month of Ramadan.