Blog & News 2 min read

Annapurna introduces: Ramadan

For one month starting today, approximately 1.6 billion Muslims observe the holy month of Ramadan and will wake up before dawn to eat. They will then begin their work day, forgoing food, water, and rest until sunset. This is all part of a period of fasting, prayer, and religious devotion called Ramadan. The fasting date changes yearly because the Islamic calendar is based on the lunar cycle hence, its starting and end date depends upon the sighting of the crescent moon. 

For this special episode to recognise the importance of Ramadan to Muslims, and particularly our Muslim colleagues at Annapurna. We spoke to Odera Olapade, Information Technology Recruitment Consultant and Shanice Khalef, HR Research Consultant at Annapurna Recruitment.

“For me, Ramadan is about peace and togetherness. It allows you to step away from the world and realise what really matters.”

Traditionally, Ramadan is during the 9th month of the Islamic Calendar, lasting 29 to 30 days. Muslims abstain from all eating and drinking from dawn (Suhoor) to dusk (Iftaar). Odera said that Iftaar for her is about breaking fast with your family and friends, and taking part in this together makes it so special.

“My first memories of Ramadan are from when I would go with my Mum to the mosque and fast with her.” 

Odera said it is important during this time to try not to give energy to negativity, pray for others, appreciate more and reflect on yourself to feel purity. She believes that even if you’re not religious, you should have a similar time like this, to step away and self reflect.

Fact from Odera: If it is your time of the month, you don’t have to fast, but you can pay that back after Ramadan if you want to! 

Shanice said that she has grown up in a Muslim household and that Ramadan is a time to reevaluate yourself and get closer to God. It is a realisation of doing this on purpose, even though but there are people from 3rd world countries who are forced without a choice to go without food and drink.

“For me, it’s a month of giving and it’s a feeling of being united with others.”

“It would help me for people to be understanding and allow more time to be flexible and accommodating during this time.”

Fact from Shanice:

People break their fast with dates as they are high in sugar to give you a natural energy boost. After fasting all day, your body is craving carbohydrates and sugars to maintain its energy sources. Dates are naturally high in sugar and the right kinds of carbohydrates to rejuvenate your body’s energy levels. “I eat my dates in 3s as it’s part of tradition to eat the dates in odd numbers”. This is related to not overeating as well as the significance of odd numbers in Islam. Many acts of worship in Islam are done in odd numbers.

We also spoke to Chadni Sultana, Finance and Contracts Coordinator who believes that “people use month as a time of reflection on their lives, for their spirituality and as start of a new journey to better themselves”. It brings happiness and togetherness to her family and friends.

Fact from Chadni:

Giving zakat is 1 of the 5 pillars of Islam which requires all Muslims to donate a portion of their wealth to charity. Normally, this means giving 2.5% of your total savings and wealth to give to the less fortunate.

Ramadan Mubarak! We hope you enjoyed this read and if you want to read more information, please click here to see Yasar Ahmad‘s (Global VP Talent, Mobility and Rewards at HelloFresh) presentation on Ramadan simplified!

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