UK charity Muslim Hands is launching its £1 million Qurbani appeal distributing meat in 23 countries, which will help feed over 800,000 of the world's neediest people. Countries supported will include emergency zones such as Syria and Somalia, as well as people struggling with the cost-of-living crisis in the UK. Food prices have skyrocketed in the UK with inflation at a record high and many unable to afford basic necessities during their weekly shop, let alone meat, which has seen a price increase of up to 15 per cent.
Half of the UK’s Muslim population are living below the poverty line, struggling to feed themselves and their families, with many reliant on school meals and food banks to make ends meet. Muslim Hands will ensure that, as part of its UK Qurbani appeal, support will extend to vulnerable families in the UK by partnering with premium organic Halal distributors, Hill Farm Finest. The fresh meat will be distributed at our Open Kitchens in Nottingham and Hounslow as well as in nutritious meals prepared at our Open Kitchen in Hounslow. A third of the meat will be delivered to the homes of our donors who have selected a UK Qurbani during the three-day Eid al-Adha festival, celebrated between 28th June to 2nd July.
Ehsan Choudhry, Open Kitchen Hounslow Manager, said:
‘Last year our Qurbani appeal within the UK made a huge difference to over 80 families residing in West London. Many of the beneficiaries were refugees from Sudan, Yemen, Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria who are sadly struggling to put food on the table. Shockingly one family of four told me that it was the first time they had lamb in four months since they came to the UK, because they were unable to afford the cost of meat. Unfortunately, stories like these are commonly heard at our Open Kitchen premises. We are extremely grateful to our generous donors that chose to offer their Qurbani to those impacted closer to home. We were also able to use the meat in our nutritious balanced meals provided at the Open Kitchen, across a three-month span. It was great to see how our UK Qurbani appeal reached all parts of the Hounslow community during the special time of Eid-ul-Adha and beyond, which we hope to do again in the coming weeks.’
More than 820 million people in the world suffer from food poverty (WHO), which is largely the result of conflict and climate change. In Somalia, the ongoing drought coupled with recent floods have made over 7 million Somalis food insecure, with malnutrition rates highest amongst women and children. As part of the Qurbani programme, Muslim Hands will provide fresh meat to over 34,000 beneficiaries across Somalia including Mogadishu.
Habibo Usman Subair is 38 years old and has 7 children. She has been living in the camps in Mogadishu for four years. She told our teams, ‘when I received my Qurbani meat last year I fried it so that it would last longer. By doing this the meat lasted for one week and I was able to feed my family. I try and eat meat at least once a month and it is usually the cheaper cuts of meat like stomach or intestines. I get by to provide for my family by washing people’s clothes and I roughly make $2.5 dollars a day which I then buy food for the children. We are looking forward to receiving meat again this year because it was high quality and we really enjoyed it.’
Yasrab Shah, Muslim Hand Fundraising Director, said:
‘At Muslim Hands we are grateful for the continued opportunity to provide fresh, high-quality meat through our Qurbani programme for over 25 years. During the annual sacrifice, we see Muslims across the world sharing food with their friends, family and the wider community, including those in great need. There is no time greater than now to be part of this community spirit and we are humbled by the generosity of our supporters, despite the uncertain climate, who continue to come forward and give to make a difference.’
Notes to editors
- Established in 1993, Muslim Hands is an international aid agency and NGO dedicated to providing emergency relief and tackling the root causes of poverty around the world.
- Muslim Hands works in over 30 countries worldwide.
- Eid ul Adha, also called the ‘Festival of Sacrifice’, is the second of two Islamic holidays celebrated worldwide each year (the other being Eid al-Fitr). This year it will be celebrated between 28th June to 2nd July 2023.
- During this festival, Muslims around the world slaughter an animal – a goat, sheep, cow or camel – to reflect the Prophet Ibrahim’s willingness to sacrifice his son Prophet Ismail for the sake of God.
- We rely on voluntary donations to continue our vital work. You can donate now by calling 0115 911 7222 or visiting muslimhands.org.uk