Ramadan 2020 is due to end on Saturday 23 May, with Eid al-Fitr, the three-day Festival of the Breaking of the Fast, beginning on Sunday 24 May.
The Muslim holy month of Ramadan, a time for spiritual reflection, contemplation and celebration, is the ninth and holiest month of the Islamic calendar.
This year's Ramadan has been very different, as the coronavirus pandemic has meant staying at home as much as possible, and not being allowed into the houses of your friends and loved ones.
From Friday 24 April when Ramadan 2020 began, Muslims across the UK and around the world have been fasting daily from early morning to sunset. To help prevent the spread of covid-19, worshippers have observed their fasting and prayers at home because the lockdown meant the closure of all mosques.
This year, there will be no public Eid events either, so celebrations will also be confined to people's homes instead. It has been a very unique Ramadan this year, as administrator Searaz Khalifa, from National Distribution Centre, explains.
‘Usually during Ramadan, we frequent the Masjid five times a day as well as for night prayers and talks and also on Eid,’ said Searaz. ‘Unfortunately, this isn’t something we have been able to do. Ramadan is normally a very communal time where we share lots of food with friends and family when breaking our fasts. Again, sadly, we haven’t been able to do this.
‘If it wasn’t for the lockdown, we would have spent more time in the Masjid and with our families. One thing we have learnt though, is to never take anything for granted, especially our places of prayer and families. We have learnt to appreciate them a lot more this year.
‘We have spent much more time with the family. It has been a time to reconnect. Normally, families are busy doing their own thing, but due to the children being at home and adults too, we have spent much more time together as a family. Hopefully we can continue to do so after Ramadan.
‘Despite the restrictions, I have still enjoyed celebrating Ramadan at work this year. Time-wise, the days have gone quite quickly, being as it has been so busy in the transport office, starting work at half five in the morning and finishing at 6pm. My colleagues have supported me in every way even though we’re all going through a tough time with covid-19.’