Hundreds of Muslims gathered Sunday at Chelsea FC home stadium Stamford Bridge for the first-ever open Ramadan iftar.
The event was organized in collaboration with the Ramadan Tent Project to mark the Islamic month of fasting.
“We are a big community with lots of supporters from different backgrounds and we want to honor, respect and share the joy of every single fan,” said Lord Daniel Finkelstein OBE, Chair of Chelsea Foundation, Chelsea FC website reported.
“This is about saying yes to love, inclusion, community and yes to everyone who wants to be a Chelsea fan. It’s very special to be the first Premier League club to host an Open Iftar and something we are extremely proud about.”
Chelsea Foundation head Simon Taylor, Islamic Relief’s UK Director Tufail Hussain, and Dowshan Humzah, advisory board member of the Ramadan Tent Project were among the attendees.
Adhan at Stadium
Hussain, UK Director of Islamic Relief and Safwaan Hussein, Imam at the Islamic Culture and Education Centre gave speeches. Later on, Imran Abu Hassan led the prayer.
🌙— EPL World (@EPLworld) March 26, 2023
إعلان صلاة المغرب في ملعب تشيلسي🔵💙
Chelsea legend Paul Canoville, who was the first Black player to play for the club, also attended the event.
One of our speakers at @OpenIftar ensures his important place in @ChelseaFC history as he was the club’s first black player to appear in the first team. Thank you, Paul Canoville for sharing your experience and emphasising the importance of diversity #Ramadan2023 pic.twitter.com/ROMGOQamXO— Open Iftar (@OpenIftar) March 26, 2023
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Organizing Sunday’s event, the Ramadan Tent Project are celebrating their 10-year anniversary.
The organizers thanked all those who attended the dinner. “10 years of Open Iftar and we were so pleased to make history by having it take place pitch-side at Chelsea. Thank you to all those who attended, our speakers, sponsors and hardworking volunteers who made this iftar historic.”
10 years of #OpenIftar and we were so pleased to make history by having it take place pitch-side at @ChelseaFC. Thank you to all those who attended, our speakers, sponsors and hard working volunteers who made this iftar historic. #Ramadan2023 pic.twitter.com/hwzaNL4y94— Open Iftar (@OpenIftar) March 26, 2023
Ramadan is the holiest month in the Islamic calendar.
In Ramadan, adult Muslims, save the sick and those traveling, abstain from food, drink, smoking and sex between dawn and sunset.
Muslims dedicate their time during the holy month to become closer to Allah through prayer, self-restraint, and good deeds.