Community Association’s Iftar success

Ramadan Mubarak!

On Monday 25 March 2024, the Beeston Hill Community Association (BHCA) held its first ever Community Iftar event in collaboration with the Hamara Healthy Living Centre on Tempest Road. It was wonderful to see around 100 people, from across the community, come together to break fast during the Holy month of Ramadan.

After months of preparation, committee members Shaz Akhtar and Natalie Armitage’s hard work paid off! Together the duo had worked so hard to bring together all the details of the event, their efforts enabled the evening to run smoothly and have such a positive atmosphere.

This event was truly a community endeavour – many local businesses and individuals gave their time, money and food to enable this event to happen – these included Yasin Catering, Kofe, Beeston Hill Pharamacy, Good Deeds, King Kebab, Dawson Stores, Mr Mobile, Food Fusion, Fastrax and Opal Glazing. Shaz provided some gorgeous deserts, Hamara staff helped to set up and pack down the event; Hamara’s Josie setting out a beautiful grazing table! Many others helped serve food all evening and make the room look fantastic. There was a real sense of unity and coming together of all sorts of different people – people of Muslim faith, other faiths or no faith – everyone was welcome and included.

Co-organiser Shaz said:

“We set this iftar in the hope of bringing people together from every background to enable them to see what the Muslims mean by iftar … yes it’s a meal, but we also pray which includes prayers for all our neighbors and people around the world. The prophet Muhammed phuh taught us that we are all equal no matter what beliefs or faiths we hold we should respect each other as we are all creation of Allah (God). The iftar was so well mixed with so many different people it was an amazing atmosphere to be in.”

The event began with a local Imam talking to guests about Ramadan, followed by prayers and the breaking of the fast together with water, dates and fruit. The Muslim men and women then went to pray, and afterwards everyone shared the delicious foods we had been donated.

Sweets by Shaz

For those who aren’t followers of Islam this was a unique opportunity to experience an Iftar and gain a greater understanding of the importance of fasting during Ramadan. Beeston resident Becky Howcroft came along with her family, she commented:

“We really enjoyed ourselves at the Iftar … the food was incredible and the hospitality from the BHCA was warm. Our son was so excited he couldn’t believe how many treats he was getting. It was interesting as well to listen to the Imam share about how Ramadan focused Muslims on how to be better people … we learnt something new. It’s so great that there’s a group of residents trying to build community and do something so positive.“

All the food that was left over was distributed to local people to ensure nothing was wasted. Iftar takeaway bags had also been made up to give away during the event. Nobody left feeling hungry!

This event felt like a celebration of all the good things and diversity of our community. It was brilliant to see a room full of different people eating and talking together – the BHCA is keen to facilitate and enable future events like this as they help to build positive connections and relationships in the community. This sense of togetherness will help us be a strong force for good in the area, especially when we look to bring about positive change in the community.

Our next public meeting will be on Monday 20 May 6:30-8pm at the Hamara Healthy Living Centre, Tempest Road. All welcome – amazing refreshments provided!

The ‘Beeston Hill Community Association’ is a community led group which aims to give the residents of Beeston Hill* the opportunity to get to know neighbours, share views on community life and be heard. We hope to celebrate what is strong in our community, not simply focus on what is wrong. We would love to see residents getting to know each other, working together to speak up for the area and bring about change.

*BHCA covers the old red brick housing around the Tempest road area, down to Dewsbury Road, including areas such as the Harlechs, Woodviews, Stratfords and all surrounding streets.


This post was written by Sarah Hutchinson

We encourage anyone living or working in South Leeds to use this website to tell their news. You can either use the Create an article for South Leeds Life page, or email us at:


While you’re here, can we ask a favour?

South Leeds Life is published by a not-for-profit social enterprise. We keep our costs as low as possible but we’ve been hit by increases in the print costs for our monthly newspaper which have doubled in the last two years.

Could you help support local community news by making a one off donation, or even better taking out a supporters subscription?

Donate here, or sign up for a subscription at

Thank you for your support

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *