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Bonding with Family

In addition to your individual growth, Ramadan is an excellent opportunity to reconnect as a family unit. Experiencing the struggle and hard work of ibadah (worship) can strengthen family bonds. Listen to The FYI’s webinars about how to approach Ramadan as a family.

  • Growing in Ramadan as a Family: This webinar discusses practical ways for the whole family to embrace the Ramadan spirit.
  • Catch the Blessings: This webinar discusses how to reframe our thinking about Ramadan in quarantine which may be relevant for families who will have a socially distanced Ramadan this year. Many of the tips are about creating new family traditions especially for families who spend the majority of Ramadan at home. See the section titled “Worshiping at Home” for more ideas.

For Married Individuals, Use This Time To Strengthen Your Relationship!

Ramadan Toolkit Images

For Families With Children Or Teens, Create Family Traditions!

As a family, have a conversation about the traditions you practiced in Ramadan during the pandemic. Which of those traditions would you like to keep this Ramadan? What other traditions do you want to practice as a family? Here are some ideas:

Make a part of your home a “masjid.”

  • Mimic the masjid feel by ensuring that the adhan can be heard aloud in the house five times a day. Have a designated muadhin (one who calls to prayer).
  • Pray outside or under the stars as a way to connect to nature and the belief that Allah (SWT) is constant no matter the circumstance.
  • Set up masjid decor pieces you can take out to signal “masjid” for the family.
  • Use rugs, nice smells, dim light, and clean, beautiful clothing that all signal salah time.
  • Attach loving gestures and connectedness to thikr activities. Follow the sunnah by playing games and hugging your children after salah.

Ramadan Toolkit Images

Set Goals With Your Children

Ramadan Toolkit Images (3)

Help Them Feel The Ramadan Spirit

  • Start a gratitude challenge to encourage kids to consistently reflect on what they’re thankful for.
  • Increase the visibility of Islamic materials around the home, like placing Islamically-relevant children’s books and magazines out on display.
  • Decorate together. Listen to Ramadan nasheed (Islamic songs) or play the Quran to help get everyone in the Ramadan spirit as you decorate the house.
  •  Involve them in meal planning and cooking, iftar organizing, and general house preparations for Ramadan.

Ramadan Toolkit Images (1)
Have family Quran competitions with prizes to keep everyone motivated:

Who read the most minutes/day

Who completed reading the most amount of the Quran

Who spent the most time in reading the meaning of the Quran

Who shared the most number of personal reflections of the Quran

Who has the most beautiful recitation of the Quran

  • Engage in charity together, Giving charity is an important aspect of Ramadan, both as a teaching tool and as a way to bond together.
  • Get them in the habit of giving money intentionally–how much are they willing to share of what Allah (SWT) has gifted them? Help them create a budget for donations, research and evaluate a charity’s impact and effectiveness, and let them choose where the donations go.

Make Use Of Free Time

Help your children fill their spare time with meaningful activities. Here are some ideas:
Ramadan Toolkit Images (2)

Use non-religious activities as a teaching opportunity— help children make a positive intention for engaging in them so that their time, even in Ramadan, is spent earning reward and getting close to Allah (SWT).

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Zakat eligibility of The FYI

The Family & Youth Institute, or The FYI, is a well-known Muslim organization in the United States. It works to promote mental health and wellness by strengthening and empowering individuals, families, and communities through research and education. It has been working for many years to bring Islamic perspectives to understanding and promoting mental health in our communities.

It is dedicated to serving and supporting Muslims – safeguarding our deen, our families, and our future generations. Therefore, the work of The FYI comes in the category of ‘fi sabeelillah’ or the Path of Allah, within the eight categories where Zakat money can be used.

Zakah expenditures are only for the poor and for the needy and for those employed for it and for bringing hearts together [for Islam] and for freeing captives [or slaves] and for those in debt and for the cause of Allah, and for the [stranded] traveler – an obligation [imposed] by Allah, And Allah, is Knowing and Wise.”
(Al-Tawbah 9:60)

According to scholars who widen the meaning of fee sabeelillah to include any activities that promote Islamic growth, The FYI is indeed eligible to receive part of the Zakat funds for its programs and services. I urge Muslims in America to support this organization through their donations, general charity, and through their Zakat. I ask Allah swt to strengthen and guide The FYI to continue its good work in supporting Muslims.

Shaikh Ali Suleiman Ali, PhD

About Shaikh Ali

Sh. Ali Suleiman Ali was born in Ghana where he spent his childhood studying with various Muslim scholars. He then moved to Saudi Arabia and enrolled in the Islamic University of Madina.  He graduated with a degree in both Arabic and Islamic Studies. Dr. Ali went on to complete his Ph.D. in Islamic Studies at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.

Sh. Ali serves on the Advisory Council of The Family & Youth Institute. He is the Senior Imam and Director of the Muslim Community of Western Suburbs in Canton, Michigan. Additionally, he serves as the Director of Muslim Family Services in Detroit and is a council member of the Fiqh Council of North America (FCNA). He is also a member of the North American Imams Federation (NAIF) and the Association of Muslim Jurists of America (AMJA).