Nothing brings people together more than sharing food. Some people even say that food is the currency of interfaith relations.
Under this motto, Muslims and Hindus in Leicester are coming together to share food as part of a scheme to encourage interfaith friendships in the city.
The idea of ‘Come Dine Together’ events was suggested by St Philip’s Centre in Evington, a charity that promotes interfaith harmony, inspired by the Channel 4 series Come Dine With Me.
“The currency of interfaith work is food and we wanted to create an arena where friendships can be made through dialogue, transparency, and resilience,” Deputy Director of the St Philip’s Centre, Riaz Ravat told Leicester Mercury.
Leicester, known as one of the most diverse cities in the UK, is recognized for its strong community ties and is something that Riaz said he wants to “build and nurture.”
“Ultimately, whatever happens in the other parts of the world, Leicester creates resiliency and harmony,” Riaz said.
“This is a way of reminding people that we have a shared history and could have a shared future.”
The week-long scheme coincides with the UN World Interfaith Harmony Week.
Organizers hope the scheme will encourage other faith groups to create lasting friendships.
“It’s a simple act but eating together presents a perfect opportunity for us to teach, share and show that we care for one another and to build a stronger, more accepting city in the process,” Suleman Nagdi, a spokesperson from the Federation of Muslim Organizations, said.
Currently, Christianity dominates at 32.4% of the overall population. The second religion that is popular in Leicester is Islam, with Muslims making up 18.6% of the population.