The rising cost of living and the impacts of the pandemic have pushed vulnerable Muslim families deep into poverty. Soaring costs of food items and energy bills have forced some families to plan cutbacks on festivities, gifts, and food in the run-up to the Muslim holiday of Eid, which marks the end of the holy month of Ramadan.
According to figures from the Muslim Census, 50% of Muslims are living in poverty as of September 2020. The study found that Muslims have been pushed into poverty at a rate 10 times higher than the national average.
The Eid celebration will mark the end of the holy month of Ramadan and is typically an exciting time for Muslim children, as older relatives or family friends are required to provide them with a gift. Money is also given, but children will also receive other gifts such as toys to celebrate the essence of togetherness, family and charitable deeds.
Islamic Relief UK will continue to distribute essential food packs which will be prepared and distributed in time for Eid to help vulnerable families prepare for the holiday. For example, food packs distributed in Liverpool will contain essential cooking items and an additional 500 packs of Eid decorations will be donated by EidParty.co.uk to ensure families can enjoy the festivities.
During the holy month, Islamic Relief UK has partnered with community organisations to work across the UK to distribute food packs. Moreover, community iftars were held to invite families and local representatives to share a free meal and enjoy the community spirit during a challenging time.
Many people have also been hit hard by the pandemic, including, low-income families, those suffering from domestic abuse, the homeless, asylum seekers and refugees who were already struggling to feed themselves and many prioritising eating or heating as they struggle to pay their bills.
Tufail Hussain, Director of Islamic Relief UK said: “It is heartbreaking to see families unable to enjoy such a joyful occasion without having to worry about how they will keep up with the rising costs of food and energy. We have seen people struggling every day throughout the holy month and children are missing out on what should be an exciting time after a month of fasting and charitable deeds.
“We are supporting these important distributions as we want to ensure that people can enjoy this occasion with enough food for themselves and take the day to celebrate with their loved ones.”