With Ramadan just around the corner, quintuple British Premier League club Chelsea has just announced that it will be organizing the UK’s largest community event celebrating the holy few weeks of fasting and spirituality on March 26.
In a press release published earlier this week, the London Blues’ officials revealed that they will be organizing an open iftar, at the heart of their home ground, Stanford Bridge, with the aim to gather Muslims and non-Muslims from the club’s staff and fans to share an evening together, and break fast while promoting meaningful inter-faith exchange and communication.
”I’m delighted to announce our open iftar alongside the Ramadan Tent Project and we are extremely proud to be the first Premier League club to be doing so. Recognizing Ramadan and our Muslim community is a crucial aspect of our work in promoting religious tolerance and I look forward to welcoming everyone (…)” said Simon Taylor, head of the Chelsea Foundation.
We’re excited to announce that we are hosting an Open Iftar in partnership with the @RamadanTent Project! ☪️
We’ll be the first PL club to ever host an Iftar at their stadium and we look forward to welcoming our local Muslim community.#GamesForEquality
— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) March 13, 2023
Held in collaboration with the Ramadan Tent Project, an award-winning charity that has been bringing communities together and fostering an appreciation of the holy month since its founding in 2013, the initiative has already received support from several prominent members of Chelsea’s Muslim community, including two of its current field players, namely Wesley Fofana and Kalidou Koulibaly.
”We are honored to bring open iftar to Stamford Bridge, on the occasion of our 10-year anniversary and our 2023 theme of ’Belonging’ and work in partnership with Chelsea FC who have been driving inclusivity in football. To such an extent, the ’Pride of London’ will be the first Premier League club in history to host an open iftar event,” said Omar Salha, founder and CEO of the Ramadan Tent Project.
”Football and Ramadan brings people together over shared experiences and we are thrilled to share this important celebration with football supporters from all backgrounds, representing a community of communities,” he continued.
Extending invitations to members of local mosques and fans, the heartwarming effort is believed to be part of the English club’s No To Hate campaign, an equality and inclusion program that aims at steering all inside and outside members of Chelsea FC away from hate-speech and other kinds of discrimination.
This historic move serves as a commendable display of appreciation for a community that continues to endure xenophobia within the UK. By placing them at the forefront of the club’s agenda, the initiative is a praiseworthy effort we hope to see other clubs following in the nearby future.