Hackney Council is encouraging Muslim smokers to use the holy month of Ramadan as an opportunity to stop smoking for good.
During Ramadan, which begins on 7 June, Muslims must not eat, drink or use any kind of tobacco during daylight hours, providing an ideal time to beat the cravings and stop smoking.
There are a number of significant health benefits to be gained from giving up smoking and having a smoke-free environment is better for a family. By quitting smoking, a substantial amount of money can also be saved with the average pack of 20 cigarettes now costing almost £10.
Support to stop smoking during Ramadan will be available from Hackney’s Stop Smoking Service. Specialist advisors will be teaming-up with local mosques to provide free, confidential support, information and advice around prayer times.
Hackney’s specialist stop smoking advisors speak a range of different languages and offer one to one support in locations across the borough. A leaflet has been produced detailing the support available during Ramadan in a number of different languages including Bengali, Turkish and Arabic.
Cllr Jonathan McShane, Cabinet Member for Health, Social Care and Culture, said: “Smoking remains one of the most important risk factors for disease, disability and premature mortality in Hackney. If you smoke, quitting is probably the greatest single step you can take to improve your health. Ramadan provides an excellent opportunity for smokers to quit for good and the best and most effective way to do that is to sign up to Hackney’s Stop Smoking Service.”
Mohammed Amejee, from the North London Muslim Community Centre, said: “Ramadan is a month for purification, in which Muslims around the world give up eating and drinking during the day so that among other things, they can truly appreciate the favours, gifts and opportunities that Allah has given to them.
“It is also a month in which Muslims will try to stop their bad habits. This will help to protect the good that they do in this month, and will also help them to stop these bad habits after Ramadhan.
“Therefore use this Ramadhan to quit smoking. By doing this you will purify yourself and those that you love from all of the harms of smoking, and also take a huge step towards quitting this habit permanently.”
For confidential, expert advice and where to get support to stop smoking, contact Hackney’s Stop Smoking Service on: 0800 046 9946 or: 020 3316 1085 or visit: www.smokefreehackney.org
Specialist stop smoking advisors will be available at the Hackney mosques:
Azizye Mosque (Turkish) – 117 Stoke Newington Road, London N16 8BU
Clinic on Fridays, 10 June to 1 July from 1pm – 4pm.
Markazul-Uloom London (Bangladeshi) – 1 Sandringham Road, Dalston, London E8 2LR
Clinic on Friday 27 May from 1pm – 4pm
Clinic on Thursdays, 2 June to 30 June from 1pm – 4pm