500 Guests welcomed to inaugural COSARAF Iftar

The COSARAF Foundation trustees and team were delighted to host the first-ever COSARAF Iftar event supported by the Ramadan Tent Project and hosted by the V&A.

On the first Friday of Ramadan, 2023, the 24th March, we held our first-ever Iftar event at the prestigious V&A Museum in South Kensington, London.  The event was kindly supported by the Ramadan Tent Project and their volunteer army.  We welcomed 500 people; over 150 COSARAF guests and over 300 members of the general public who had registered for the Open Iftar event through Eventbrite, with tickets ‘selling out’ within 24 hours!



The Beautiful Raphael Court

Situated in the beautiful Raphael court, a large, high-ceilinged, domed hall, adorned with the magnificent Raphael Cartoons, the room was laid out with banqueting roll, dates and water for the Iftar Guests arriving from 5pm.

The COSARAF host for the evening, renowned Imam, Ajmal Masroor, opened the event and welcomed the guests, packed into the great hall.  Following this, COSARAF trustee, Farouq Sheikh, thanked our hosts, the V&A and our partners for enabling this event to finally happen after being in the making for 4 years.  He shared his thoughts on how the event showed the growth and inclusiveness of the Muslim community in the UK, where all are welcomed to share in iftar during Ramadan.

Guest speakers followed; Kavita Puri, trustee of the V&A, spoke about the importance of sharing culture and the significance of the new Ramadan Pavilion art installation at the museum.  Following this, Shaheen Kasmani, lead curater for the Ramadan Pavilion, reiterated that the space is there to be used, as a live art installation, whether it be for prayers, coffee or just a place to enjoy your thoughts.

The adhan was performed beautifully by Hassen Rasool, in an evocative performance, echoing around the great Raphael court.  Following this, guests were invited to Magrib prayers led by Imam Abid, in the main domed foyer.

Magrib Prayers at the V&A

It was a sight to behold, with public visitors to the museum, awe-struck by the serenity and beauty of the congregation at prayer.

Once guests were returned to the main hall, Iftar biriani’s were distributed by the volunteers, catered by Spice Village, and the mingling, networking and sharing between guests wove through the evening.

The essence of iftar…

We would like to thank all our partners and guests for attending, making this Iftar event a most magical evening for all.

To learn more about the Ramadan Pavilion and the programming taking place at the V&A, please visit here.

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