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Ramadan Festival underway in Leicester

Stalls at the festival sell a variety of goods Credit: Pukaar News

The fourth annual Ramadan Festival is underway in Leicester, with up to 15,000 people expected to attend the four-day event, which ends on Sunday.

Up to 15,000 are expected to attend Credit: Pukaar News

The festival includes Islamic arts exhibitions, prayer facilities and about 60 stalls selling a variety of foods, clothes and gifts. It's all to celebrate the Holiest time in the Muslim calendar.

The event is still open until midnight, so as many people as possible are able to collectively break their fasts.

More than £8000 raised in the West Midlands for Cakes4Syria campaign

Cake deliveries take place until 27 or 28 July Credit: Twitter/@Cakes4Syria

Young Muslim volunteers have been raising money for Syrian refugees by running a cake delivery service.

The 'Cakes for Syria' campaign is taking place throughout the month of Ramadan and they have already exceeded their £25,000 target.

The West Midlands alone has sold 1741 cakes with £8.705 raised so far for the campaign.

Cakes can be ordered by calling anytime the Cakes4Syria call centre on 01274 952144 or texting 07511724372 (12 noon - 8pm).

Cakes cost £10 with £5 going towards Islamic Relief's Syria appeal.

Deliveries take place on Sundays and Thursdays until 27 or 28 July which heralds the end of Ramadan.


Ismaili Muslim community donate supplies for the homeless

People at the Ismaili Muslim Community Centre, in Hamilton in Leicester, were donating food for the homeless during the holy month of Ramadan.

Volunteers, at the Ismaili Muslim Community Centre, donating food for the homeless Credit: ITV News Central

Community leader, Zuli Hassam, explained the project and said:

We are packaging essential items, both food and non-food items, all of which are going into boxes that have been donated by members of our community. Some items have been procured through donations that we have received and this is all an effort that we are engaging in for the month of Ramadan.

Children help pack boxes of food and supplies for the homeless at the Ismaili Muslim Community Centre in Hamilton Credit: ITV News Central

Children were also among those volunteering to pack boxes for the homeless and one young boy said how people were working together:

It's a really good way to bring the community together and everyone's involved so its a really good way for the community to do good things for others too.

Another volunteer, a young girl, said it was great to help others less fortunate:

I thought it was a great cause to be helping others. so it's good to help others that are less fortunate than us. So as you can see everyone's working as a team together, so it's great to be able to help those that don't have stuff that we take for granted.

Extremist Muslims are 'a very small minority' says community leader

24-hours after more than 100,000 Imams urged British Muslims not to fight in Syria, Muslim community leaders said only a small minority are being radicalised.

Today, people at the Ismaili Muslim Community Centre, in Hamilton in Leicester, were donating food for the homeless during the holy month of Ramadan.

Volunteers, at the Ismaili Muslim Community Centre, donating food for the homeless Credit: ITV News Central

Volunteers at the centre said Islam is a peaceful religion and say the faith has been demonised by recent events.

Zuli Hassam, leader at the Ismaili Muslim Community Centre, in Hamilton in Leicester said:

This is a small group of people who have chosen something - either because they have been radicalised in this way or they have been manipulated - but they are a very small minority. The majority of Muslims are peace-loving, law-abiding citizens who care for each other and who care for society.

Zuli Hassam, leader at the Ismaili Muslim Community Centre Credit: ITV News Central

Hasina Kassam, who volunteers at the centre, spoke of how extremism has given people a false perception of Muslims and said:

It's very sad, it's all misunderstood and unfortunately we all get labelled with one brush. But we're part of the Ismaili community and the Aga Khan is our spiritual leader. We're all into humanity, we all want to serve one another, we're all regarded as brothers and sisters. There's no division.

Hasina Kassam, a volunteer at the Ismaili Muslim Community Centre Credit: ITV News Central

Muslims in Leicester help the homeless during Ramadan

Muslims in Leicester help the homeless during Ramadan Credit: Vesa Moilanen/STT-Lehtikuva/Press Association Images

Muslims in Leicester will be packing up aid parcels today for a local homeless charity as part of Ramadan celebrations.

350 people supported by Action Homelessness will receive a parcel containing toothpaste, shampoo and some food.

Shehnaaz, one of the volunteers said

Voluntary service is a long standing tradition in the Ismaili Muslim community and a value which we have grown up with. I feel very privileged and excited to take part in the Share a Smile campaign.


Thousands crowd into Birmingham park for Eid Mela

Stalls, live music and other activities filled Birmingham's Cannon Hill Park for an Eid Mela celebration marking the end of fasting during Ramadan.

Cannon Hill Park in Birmingham was filled with family activities for Eid Mela Credit: ITV Central

Thousands of people descended on the park for the event, which featured the music of top UK and international Asian music stars among other activities.

Thousands due at Eid Mela celebration in Birmingham

Thousands of people are expected to crowd into Birmingham's Canon Hill Park to celebrate the end of fasting during Ramadan.

The Eid Mela celebration, which starts at 12.30pm, will feature the sounds of top international and UK Asian artists.

As well as marking the end of the fast, the family event is designed to highlight the diversity of the Muslim community in Birmingham, through music, food and sport.

Diabetic Muslims told to seek GP advice while fasting

Muslims in the Midlands who have diabetes are advised to speak to their GP if they decide to fast during Ramadan.

The British Medical Journal has found in a recent study that the change in the eating patterns of Muslims during Ramadan significantly increases the risk of blood sugar problems.

Dr Ather Hussain said: “Islam is very clear, that if a person feels that their illness will prolong or become more severe as a result of fasting, then he or she is exempt from that, and they can fast at a later date. So it is best to get advice from their local GP.”

Ramadan advice for diabetic Muslims in the Midlands

Diabetes UK has offered advice to practicing Muslims living with diabetes, who have decided to fast for Ramadan.

  • If you are taking insulin, you will require less insulin before the start of the fast
  • The type of insulin may also need changing from your usual type
  • Pre-mixed insulin is not recommended during fasting
  • Check your blood glucose levels more often than you normally would
  • When you break the fast, have only small quantities food, and avoid only eating sweet or fatty foods
  • Try to eat just before sunrise, when you commence the next day’s fast
  • Before starting the fast, you should include more slowly absorbed food (low GI), such as rice, pitta bread and dhal, in your meal, along with fruit and vegetables
  • At the end of fasting you should drink plenty of sugar-free and decaffeinated fluids to avoid being dehydrated.

Muslim children do not need to fast until they get to their teens.

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