On Thursday evening, members of the Airdrie Amadiyya Muslim Association donated 585 pounds of foodstuffs to the local food bank as part of celebrations marking the end of a month of fasting. In a few days' time, Ramadan will officially come to an end with the celebration of Eid al-Fitr (Feast of Breaking the Fast).

Christine Taylor, the Events, Marketing and Communications Manager for the Airdrie Food Bank said that there has been more demand in recent months, even more than when compared to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

“The reason for that is the support that the government gave out; we really noticed the increase after all of the government supports were done. It's still increasing,” she said. “People are having to choose between buying groceries or paying a bill and unfortunately, groceries are usually the last thing people afford to buy.” 

Taylor also noted that with the obvious price hikes in grocery stores there has also been a decrease in donations to the Food Bank. However, she did also say that due the community’s generosity and their determination to continue to support the food bank, there have been no shortages. 

“We have given more food in the last few years than ever. And, you know, we aren't turning anybody away,” Taylor said. “We're just very fortunate that we have been able to keep our doors open.” 

In a previous interview with Discover Airdrie, Sairah Khan, a member of Ahmadiyya Muslim ladies of Airdrie explained that one of the main tenants of Ramadan, other than fasting is to do good deeds.  

“Even though every Muslim should be doing this throughout the year but Ramadan just helps to refresh oneself,” Khan said. “It just helps to practice self-discipline, self-control, sacrifice, empathy for those who are less fortunate.” 

The donation also coincides with another important day within Ramadan; Laylat Al Qadr, translated from Arabic; The Night of Power. Laylat Al Qadr is regarded are one of the most significant events within Ramadan. The day is celebrated close to the end of Ramadan. On this day, Muslims believe that the Angel Gabriel descended from the heavens and recited the opening verses of the Quran to the Prophet Muhammad. It is believed that on this day God grants blessings and answers prayers.

"In their religion, I believe that service and giving is a part of their culture and their beliefs and we are grateful for it," Taylor added. 

Eid al-Fitr will start on Sunday and continue through till Monday.  

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