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“I’m Not a Muslim, But I Will Fast for One Day”

In Blackburn, it is common to find non-Muslims fasting with their fellow Muslims during Ramadan to show support and solidarity.

This Ramadan, and despite the coronavirus pandemic, Blackburn community charity One Voice invited non-Muslims to fast for one day, for an annual challenge, themed “I’m not a Muslim but I will fast for one day”.

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The challenge has attracted nearly 1000 people since it started six years ago.

“My reason for choosing to fast for one day is because it really makes me appreciate what we take for granted,” Sarah Johns of BwD Healthy Living told Lancashire Telegraph.

“Delivering food parcels every day since the start of the pandemic has really brought home how people are struggling to access healthy nutritious food not only worldwide but also in our borough.

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“I also feel that fasting alongside my Muslim colleagues is important, particularly at a time when they would otherwise be spending time with family and friends.”

 Abrar Hussain, Chairman of One Voice said: “Ramadan is the time of year when the Muslim community take time to reflect on their lives and their spirituality.

“This project started with a few people fasting as non-Muslims.

“This year, despite the restrictions imposed due to Covid-19, a huge number of people are taking part from the safety of their home. This is a testament to the resounding unity in Blackburn and Darwen.”

The initiative is not the first this Ramadan.

Liberal Democrats joined Muslims fasting Ramadan, on Saturday, April 25, seizing the opportunity to raise money for charities that tackle hunger in the UK.

The day of fasting was also suggested to support Muslims observing Ramadan in isolation due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Paul Bristow, a Conservative MP for Peterborough in Eastern England, also fasted the first week of Ramadan to better understand what this holy month and practice means to Muslims.