Health and wellbeing

From a workplace to a community. Yahya shares how he observes Ramadan at home and at the City of Sydney

Yahya El-Arab shares what a typical day during Ramadan looks like, why it’s important to understand the occasion and how he celebrates Eid-al-Fitr.

Work health and safety support officer Yahya El-Arab

The holiest month to strengthen family and community ties

Ramadan is a sacred month of fasting, reflection and community in Islam. It's observed by Muslims worldwide as a time to fast from dawn until sunset, abstaining from food and drink during daylight hours.

This period is dedicated to purifying the soul, practicing self-discipline and refocusing attention on spiritual growth. It's also a time for increased prayer, reading the Qu’ran and charity. Ramadan is not just about fasting but also about strengthening family and community ties.

From sunrise to sunset each day

My day starts quite early, waking up an hour before dawn to enjoy a light breakfast and a coffee to prevent the migraines! I head to my local mosque to join the congregational dawn prayer followed by a reading of the Qu’ran.

After work I’ll try to get a little sleep and/or a quick workout before sunset, depending on my energy levels. I break my fast with family and friends - one of my favourite parts of the day!

I make my way to the mosque for the night time congregational prayers called taraweeh. It’s nice to sneak in a sweet treat before calling it a night.

Strengthening our team bond and fostering a mutual respect

Being someone who observes Ramadan, it means a lot when my colleagues understand and respect what this month is about. It's super helpful and kind when my colleagues remember I'm fasting and try not to schedule snack-filled meetings or understand if I step away for a prayer.

Small things like that make a huge difference. This level of understanding and support doesn't just make the workplace more inclusive. It strengthens our team's bond and fosters a deeper mutual respect. It turns the workplace into a community where everyone's beliefs and practices are valued.

Eid-al-Fitr, marking the end of Ramadan

My day starts with a special morning prayer at my local mosque alongside the community. This is a beautiful, communal moment that really sets the tone for the day. After prayers, I wear my best clothes to mark the occasion.

Then, it's all about spending time with family and friends. I visit relatives and we share a big feast and lots of desserts. Giving to charity is another crucial part of Eid al-Fitr. It's a reminder to share our blessings with those less fortunate.

It's a day filled with joy, gratitude and community, celebrating not just the end of fasting but also the personal growth and spiritual insights gained during Ramadan.

Published 27 May 2024