We have reached the end once more; as we bid farewell to the holiest month let us remember that the Lord of Ramadan is the Lord of every month in the calendar, and Ramadan coming to an end does not mark the end of our intentions, actions and worship.
A key lesson behind the beauty of this month is that the spirit of Ramadan shines within every single one of us. On the first day of Ramadan, we did not wake up completely different people, and on the morning of Eid we did not wake up much different either.
We are the diamonds, Ramadan only polishes the mind, body, and soul to shine bright like one.
Ramadan: reset or a reminder?
Ramadan is often referred to as a reset button, but we like to think of it as a reminder button. A reminder of what we can accomplish, a reminder of the sweetness of spirituality, a reminder that everything is for Allah – to draw closer to Him.
We may feel that we are the best versions of ourselves in Ramadan; the month is a reminder of what we are capable of every day, and it is important to not let fear get in the way of our capabilities, for optimism is part of the nature of Islam. Ramadan is a gateway and an inspirational insight of what we can do throughout the year.
A sign of whether our Ramadan has been accepted, is that our good actions continue beyond the blessed month. As we bid farewell to Ramadan, we must hold on to its spirit and bring it into everything we do – bring it into every space we take up.
Which spaces did Ramadan Tent Project take up to deliver Ramadan Festival 2022?
We activated the virtual realm with our Welcome Ramadan Conference and a number of Open Iftars hosted via Zoom, and we took over Instagram Live with Ramadan Lates as hosts from Inspirited Minds and Charity Week reflected on the month with our audiences.
We gave life to physical spaces and created history across London and the UK with our flagship project, Open Iftar. We laid our banqueting rolls on the grounds of Wembley Stadium, V&A Museum and Trafalgar Square amongst other London landmarks including churches, open spaces and under the iconic arch of Hay’s Galleria. We also served communities at the ruins of Coventry Cathedral, at Cambridge Central Mosque, and in the largest public squares in the North.
We captured memories through the lens and had the first Open Iftar event at Royal Albert Hall featured in The Times. We made history through serving others, and this simple act of faith made its way into the homes and hearts of others who may not have been present on the day, but would have felt the warmth of our service through the words in national and international press, and digital and media coverage.
We also inspired and energised people’s homes and hearts by way of My Open Iftar packs, featuring recipe cards, decorative bunting and a prayer pamphlet. 1,000 packs made their way into the homes, offices, schools, public institutions, and work places of those of faith and no faith, of adults and children, of families and those living alone. Some were purchased as gifts for colleagues and with every pack purchased, a donation to feed a vulnerable individual was made so you too could serve others during the most holy month.
Who served and who did we serve?
This year, over 100 volunteers served over 10,000 guests in the most holy month. Setting out water and dates every night, distributing food to all who were present including security and staff, and ensuring we left some of the UK’s most iconic landmarks with a new history and story representing millions across the country.
“Service to others is the rent you pay for your room here on Earth”– Muhammad Ali
With nothing but utmost thanks to all who were involved in the execution of our Ramadan Festival 2022, our speakers, sponsors, venues and volunteers. Special thanks to Arts Council England and the Department for Culture, Media and Sport for acknowledging our efforts and supporting our work to bring communities together to better understand each other. It is with this support that we are able to proudly represent Ramadan as a pillar of Britain’s rich cultural ecology and deliver the UK’s largest community and culture event and festival in Ramadan.
Serving tens of thousands across the country has been an honour. While we planned and put in the hours of work to make each event happen, online and in person, it was Allah’s plan that made it all happen. It is with thanks to the Most High for choosing the RTP team to serve during Ramadan, and for choosing our guests for breaking bread with us at Open Iftar 2022. May He choose for us to reach Ramadan 2023 and beyond.
Open Iftar 2023? 10 Years of RTP
Ramadan Festival 2022 has been our most successful campaign to date. But the most important measure of success is beyond the numbers, it is how we have made others feel. Ramadan Tent Project has given Muslims a sense of belonging in the UK, and has reminded the world of the real message of Islam—one of peace, harmony and inclusion.
Ramadan Festival 2022 has raised the bar, and 2023 marks 10 years since the inception of Ramadan Tent Project; the team has already started to plan for the Ramadan that will mark our ground-breaking and inspiring decade.
But do not be a stranger! We will be back in July for a special edition of Open Iftar Arafah, and we encourage you to stay in touch with us via our social media @ramadantentproject and @openiftar – follow us and subscribe to our mailer to stay in the loop.