I hope that the month of Ramadan was peaceful and prosperous for those that were fasting. Though it is not an occasion I myself observe, I was fortunate enough to participate in an initiative that allowed me to partake in the spirit of the season, so to speak.
As well as covering Arabian Ranches, Polo Homes and Arabian Ranches 2 for LuxuryProperty.com, I am fortunate to live in one of the communities at Arabian Ranches 2. On a daily basis as I travel around the area, I see more and more things that I love about neighbourhood. The trees and bushes are flourishing and making the development more mature. Houses are being moved into and landscaping completed. Groups of families are starting to meet up for coffee mornings and social events after school and at the weekends at the parks and swimming pools.
I’m lucky to now live in a community in Dubai that I have always wanted to bring my children up in (I come from a small idylic Yorkshire village where my children had nowhere to ride up and down on their bikes or meet up with friends) On Arabian Ranches 2, they are allowed to cycle to the Souk and collect coffee and croissants for their dad on a Friday morning. At the start of May this year, on one of the many Facebook groups that there are in Dubai, I read about a community Ramadan Fridge that a group of neighbourhood ladies were setting up in Arabian Ranches 2.
What is a Ramadan Fridge? Back in 2016, a Dubai-based Australian expat by the name of Sumayyah Sayed put a fridge stocked with food and water on her front porch for the duration of Ramadan. This was the start of a momvement aimed at serving the less fortunate community workers and labourers with free food and drink during the holy month. It has grown immensely popular and at the start of Ramadan this year, over two hundred fridges had been registered in Dubai.
The three ladies who started the initiative in our community have worked tirelessly for over a month, firstly starting with sourcing a fridge and having it painted by a very talented artist who gave her time and materials for free. With the preparation of a spreadsheet rota where the community filled in which slots they could manage (they asked for two volunteers, twice a day to fill the fridge), the whole process could be organized so that volunteers would get a reminder the day before they were due to fill the fridge.
In the first few days up to 200 people were visiting in the morning alone, and that number kept growing as more workers heard about the fridge. There are all the gardeners and maintenance staff who keep the community spotless, the security staff that cycle and drive around our community at all times of the day and night. The villas at Samara are nearing handover and the communities of Azalea and Reem are still under construction, so there are plenty of construction workers and other staff moving around Arabian Ranches 2 regularly.
It goes without saying that it could not have worked so well without the efforts of the three ladies who started the whole process. Their dedication to the Arabian Ranches 2 fridge, and also of all the donors, made the drive a huge success. It makes me proud to be living and working in the kind of community that Arabian Ranches 2 is turning out to be. It’s got the kind of people living here that I want my children growing up alongside. I find myself looking forward to next Ramadan, when I can once again be part of the Ramadan fridge initiative and experience a sense of community bonding that I would be hard pressed to find elsewhere.
Ruth Harris is the Arabian Ranches Specialist at LuxuryProperty.com. Check out some of her listings below.