Estonia's Islamic community donates food to front-line staff

Members of the Estonian Islamic Center donating food to the Alarm Center in Lasnamäe.
Members of the Estonian Islamic Center donating food to the Alarm Center in Lasnamäe. Source: ERR

The Estonian Islamic Center (Eesti Islami Keskus) in Tallinn has been donating food to frontline workers and those in need during the coronavirus pandemic.

The month of Ramadan is about a week old at present, a time when charity and helping others is in particular focus in the Islamic faith, which also helped prompt the initiative, ETV current affairs show "Aktuaalne kaamera" reported Tuesday evening.

The center handed over a car trunk-full of rice meals to Alarm Center (Häirekeskus) employees, as well as to volunteer-staffed Toidupank, pharmacy staff and ambulance crews, the report said.

"We have experience in feeding large numbers of people," Kazbulat Šogenov, the center's president, told "Aktuaalne kaamera".

"We decided that we could use this experience to spread this good initiative further," he added.

During the month of Ramadan, observant Muslims can only eat or drink, including water, after sunset. Breaking the fast is traditionally done at a communal meal, which this month has seen numbers as high as 500 at the Islamic center, the report said.

Mohammad Imran told "Aktuaalne kaamera" that he has been preparing meals during Ramadan for nine years now; with this year's initiative he has been preparing food at night, either alone or with helpers, and delivering it during daytime hours.

"It usually takes four to six hours, depending on the amount. Today there has been around 500 boxes of food, which took me six hours to make," he said.

Food donations to key staff and the needy have been a common occurrence during the pandemic, and have offered many a chance to sample foods they might not otherwise have done.

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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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