As we approach the blessed month of Ramadan, many of us wonder how we can make the most of the holy month. We decided to sit down with some of our Human Appeal staff members to see what they will be doing this Ramadan, and we hope their preparation plans will inspire you to make this year’s Ramadan the best one yet!
"So essentially for Ramadan I try to start reducing my food intake slightly about 2 weeks in advance. I also start incorporating healthier foods into my diet, which is really hard! I also make sure I'm praying all 5 prayers in the lead up to Ramadan. There's no time frame for this, it's more of an unconscious effort maybe a few months beforehand.
In terms of family preparation, we have a massive house clean a couple weeks before Ramadan to get rid of anything that we don’t need anymore. We usually give items to charity shops or shelters, but if something’s broken and can’t be reused, we just bin it.
We also do a bit of food prep in the week just leading up to Ramadan, making samosas, spring and chicken rolls, and kebabs so we have quick and easy things to eat when it's time to open our fasts. Usually we organise a pre-Ramadan Iftar where we'll invite everyone over for food and whatnot before the fasting officially starts.”
“To prepare for Ramadan, I usually start buying more food that fits into the Ramadan diet, such as dates and traditional desserts. I tend to cook more during Ramadan, so I make sure I do a big shop in advance so I have plenty of ingredients at home.
I’ll eat more before it’s time to start fasting and I’ll definitely spend more time praying. I tend to give to charity before Ramadan starts, to get myself into a humble and generous frame of mind. I also give my house a good clean and send Ramadan greetings to my family and friends.”
“I start by making a Ramadan Plan, where I list all the things I want to achieve during the month. This helps me prepare mentally and change my mindset. ’Ill make a prayer list and read the Qu’ran more often. I also prepare physically by cutting down on how much I’m eating so fasting is easier.
I tend to stock up on healthy foods before the month starts, including porridge oats, nuts and seeds for slow release energy, honey, olive oil, wholewheat bread and pasta, and fresh, organic fruit and vegetables.
I’ll also get ingredients for my iftar meals. I like to break the fast with watermelon and dates, healthy milkshakes (avocado and banana), shami kebabs and samosas with salad and yoghurt, rice and curry, soups, fish and couscous, or chicken wraps."
“To prepare for the holy month of Ramadan, I’ll start reading more Qur’an, usually in the morning after morning prayers, and I’ll double the number of pages I’m reading to get into the Ramadan spirit.
I like to practice some post-prayer rituals and spend time in contemplation. The month before Ramadan, known as Sha’ban, is also a holy time and I like to undertake optional fasts every Monday and Thursday throughout the month. Ramadan is about family so I’ll make the effort to spend time with the people I love and take my younger brother out to eat or play pool.
I usually alter my gym routine and get in plenty of early morning training sessions because my sleeping patterns will change during Ramadan, and I’ll also make an effort to do more clean eating before the fasting begins.”
“I always write out my objectives for Ramadan and I think it’s really important to have a plan for how I’m going to achieve them. I’ll also make a dua list and plan my annual iftar gathering in the last ten nights.
Before Ramadan starts, I start reading the Qur’an in English, increase my worship and prayers, and boost my knowledge of Islam by attending or listening to scholarly lectures. I like to give more back before Ramadan starts, by getting involved in community work, freelancing and giving Sadaqah. I’ll also limit other activities that I usually enjoy, such as listening to music and social media, so that I’ve got more time to pray and reflect before Ramadan begins.
To prep myself physically for Ramadan, I regulate my sleeping habits so it’s easier to wake up in the early mornings. I’ll also ensure that I’m physically and mentally fit for Ramadan by watching what I eat and making sure I get enough exercise. I’ll usually prepare a healthy meal plan for Ramadan too.”
How will you prepare for Ramadan this year? Donating to our Feed the Fasting project is an amazing way to get into the habit of charitable giving before the holy month starts. Get into the right mindset for Ramadan and receive amazing blessings!
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