What are the Ramadan Calendars?
Haref works with ethnic minority communities to identify key issues around health and improve the health information available to them. Our Ramadan prayer calendars are an excellent example of how to provide relevant health information in a format and context that is useful and requested by our local communities. We have been designing and distributing these calendars with our local mosques for over 10 years in the region.
Our Ramadan calendars show the prayer times for all of the different mosques across Newcastle, Gateshead and North Tyneside (each mosque has different prayer times according to their orientation and position to the sun). During the month of Ramadan, Muslims fast all day so we include important health messages alongside the timetable to help people to fast safely. For example, there are tips on fasting safely with diabetes and on the importance of continuing to take your eye drops if you have glaucoma. This year we also included information about COVID-19 vaccines and fasting.
Typically, we print thousands of these calendars to be distributed at the mosques and community centres, but in the last 2 years, we have had to make these available in digital format and online only, due to COVID-19 restrictions.
We sent the individual calendars by email to each mosque, along with key information about staying safe. We shared the information through all of our networks and bulletins, alongside a dedicated webpage with key information.
Our impact: Feedback from the community
This year after Ramadan, we completed an evaluation with the mosques about the calendars, as we were interested to know how the calendars worked in a digital format, and how the health information was used.
We're really pleased with the positive feedback we received. And the helpful comments that will mean we can make improvements to next year's calendars. Here are some of the highlights:
What did you think of the digital calendars?
I sent it out through What’s App and printed it out for people who do not have telephones.
Older people had difficulty printing it. They were unable to print them and would have preferred them printed.
How useful did you find the health information about diabetes and glaucoma?
It was helpful actually. Many people in the community have diabetes
Would any other information be helpful to add on the calendars?
Include a sentence saying ‘contact your doctor or GP before fasting if on medication’- some people will take both doses within the window where they can eat to avoid taking them during the fast. They end up taking too much medication/overdosing
Do you have feedback from community members?
It’s perfect. They printed it at home. People really liked it.
People say thanks. People like them.
Is there anything you would like to add?
When it is digital it is easier to zoom in. Hard to see when printed. Make the text bigger so that you can see it without zooming in.
You can read all the feedback in this summary report: