Eid Al Adha in UAE: Shoppers splurge not only for themselves, but for people in need Filed on July 19, 2021
Photo by M. Sajjad / Khaleej Times

Many families use occasions like Eid to teach children a lesson in charity and kindness.

Shoppers in the UAE are not only embracing their holiday spree to pamper themselves, their families and friends — but also to help people in need.

A lot of residents made quick visits to malls and hypermarkets on Monday to buy gifts and stock up on groceries for underprivileged families.

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“I try and contribute as much as I can throughout the year. It’s not specific to Eid but of course it feels better to share food and joy with those in need especially during the holidays. I am gifting a grocery hamper to a family this Eid,” said Sarah Khan, a Pakistani national who has been in Dubai for over 11 years.

Buying gifts is a way of celebration and, needless to say, it fosters social belonging especially in a multicultural environment such as the UAE.

“I have learnt so much about Islam in the last decade in Dubai. I have made friends from different faiths which has made me appreciate the importance of living in a pluralistic society. Holidays, such as the one on Eid Al Adha, are a special time for us and we try and reach out to as many people as we can to help them with basic groceries. This Eid, I am packing hampers for two families in need,” said Avni Kaur, an Indian national and resident of Dubai for over a decade.

“My six-year-old son helps me shop and we go together and give away these hampers,” she added.

Avleen A., a Syrian national, is one of the recipients of such hampers. “We are spending Eid at home with our two-year-old. Our economic situation doesn’t allow us to splurge; both my husband and I have lost our jobs. But thankfully, people around have been supportive with donations in kind. This Eid, we have received food supplies as gifts from friends and strangers, and I am grateful for these. I will be making Awameh, which is also called lukaimat here; my son loves it.”

Gazal Syed, an Indian expat who has been in the GCC for over 18 years, uses occasions like Eid to teach her two daughters a lesson in charity and kindness.

“I have ordered groceries, baby formula and diapers for two families this Eid. Both my daughters help me choose stuff online. We discuss the usefulness of items before selecting them. They suggest things that a family might need, which is a great learning experience for them and me. It is through acts like this that we celebrate and observe our Eid every year.”


Suneeti Ahuja Kohli

Suneeti Ahuja-Kohli has been in Dubai long enough to call it her spiritual home. She loves to travel but plans to settle down in Koi Samui, Thailand eventually to spend her sunset years by the sea. For now, she writes frequently on personal finance, retirement planning, business news and features, health and almost anything assigned by her editor. Her sojourns can be followed on instagram (suneetiahujakohli), news and views on Twitter @suneetiahuja, and for the rest, there’s a Facebook account.

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