The Dawoodi Bohra community of Vancouver has been careful to consider the environmental impact of their actions over the last few years. This Ramadan, they set themselves the challenge of creating zero waste. During Ramadan, the community gathers each evening for prayers and iftar (breaking of the fast). Food is cooked by caterers offsite and provided to all attendees at the time of iftar.
This year, compost bags were purchased to ensure that any organic food waste was collected separately. Compostable cups and paper plates replaced single use plastic cups and were also disposed of with organic waste to be biodegraded.
Community volunteers played an integral role in raising awareness of the significance of collecting organic waste and practicing responsible disposal, reminding individuals through daily announcements to be mindful of utilizing appropriate waste bins and avoiding landfill bins. On average, the community converted 50 liters of landfill waste to organics each evening, with an increase to 80 liters over the weekends, totalling to 1500 liters over the month.
The Vancouver Bohras’ dedication to minimizing food waste and promoting sustainability is having a meaningful impact. A member of the community, Mr. Ahmed Medina, says, ‘we believe that no food should be wasted. We ensure every night that all food is finished and that there is no waste – including even a single grain of rice.’
The Dawoodi Bohras of Vancouver have lived and worked peacefully in and around the city for decades. They hold a special interest in environmental issues as part of Project Rise, the global Dawoodi Bohra initiative aimed at uplifting communities and promoting sustainable practices.