What is in this community communication toolkit?

  • Key talking points to have with your local community about the COVID-19 vaccinations, praying Taraweeh and Ramadan at home.
  • Community questions and answers:
    • Can I take the vaccine while fasting?
    • What ingredients are in the vaccines?
    • Are there side-effects?
    • How to access the vaccine in my local community?
  • Resources to share with mosque leaders, community organisers, congregation and general Muslim community:
    • Muslim council of Britain Ramadan guidance on I’tikaf and Taraweeh for mosque leaders and organisers
    • Broad safety guidelines for mosques including dealing with a positive COVID-19 case
    • Videos from local imams with messages to their community about getting their vaccine
    • Social media assets, posters and leaflets to share through WhatsApp, Facebook and other appropriate channels about getting their vaccination
    • COVID-19 myth busting social media assets, including translations
    • COVID-19 resources from British Islamic Medical Association and Muslim Council of Britain
    • Leaflets and posters

Who is this community communication toolkit for?

  • Local imams, mosque leaders, board members and frequent attendees
  • Local community representative groups, organisers, local authority and businesses
  • GPs, pharmacists and healthcare professionals

This communication toolkit entails the key messages for Ramadan in line with medical guidance from Muslim medical experts and scholars. We have developed this informative toolkit, with social media assets, leaflets, guidance and videos from local imams for you to share with the local Muslim community for Ramadan 2021. We want to encourage vaccination uptake and dispel common myths regarding the COVID-19 vaccination, and need your support to do this.

Key messages for community conversations

  • You can get your vaccination before Ramadan at a clinic in your community. Contact your GP, pharmacy or local vaccination clinic, such as Ikhlas Community Centre for more information.
  • The COVID-19 vaccination does not invalidate your fast and you can receive your first or second dose during Ramadan (Source: British Islamic Medical Association).
  • If you experience side-effects as a result of the vaccine, these are short-lasting and mild, if they persist and worsen your condition the standard Islamic principles of sickness and illness during Ramadan should be observed.
  • The COVID-19 vaccination is
    • safe and approved by an independent medicines regulator [MHRA],
    • does not contain animal derivatives and
    • a trace amount of ethanol (alcohol), less than would be found in everyday foods such as a slice of bread or banana (Source: British Islamic Medical Association)
  • If you are observing Taraweeh prayers at a mosque this Ramadan, please ensure you inform your local mosque and imam about the following preventative measures to keep your community and congregation safe:
    • Minimise exposure; wear a mask when you enter, your own prayer mat and ventilate the space by opening windows,
    • Keep your distance: please maintain  a 2m distance from other people at all times, and do not share water bottles or pass around charity buckets – consider online donation pools
    • Reduce your time at the venue; there is evidence suggesting the virus is airborne and longer stay at the venue may increase risk of infection.
  • Ramadan at Home: Keep yourself, your loved ones and community safe by following social distancing guidelines. Although many people have received their vaccines, some people still haven’t and we want to keep everyone safe this Ramadan.
    • Stream taraweeh services at home to listen to or pray taraweeh as a single congregation within your household.
    • Plan your iftar meals to reduce shopping trips and reduce the risk of infection spread.
    • Open your fast with members of your household only, as the weather improves you may want to host outdoor gatherings, please ensure you keep to household members.
    • If you want to send iftar food to family/friends, consider using a takeaway and a delivery service to minimise contact.

Community questions and answers

Can I take the COVID-19 vaccination while fasting?
The British Muslim Council has confirmed that receiving the COVID-19 vaccines currently licensed in the UK will not invalidate the fast. Therefore, individuals should not delay their Covid-19 vaccinations on the account of Ramadan.

What ingredients does the vaccine contain?
The British Islamic Medical Association and MHRA (Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency) confirms the Pfizer/BioNTech and Oxford/ AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccinations does not contain animal ingredients and has less ethanol content than a slice of bread or banana.

You can read the British Islamic Medical Association position statement on the Pfizer/BioNTech and Oxford/ AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccinations for further clarification.

You can find the list of ingredients for Pfizer/BioNTech and Oxford/ AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccinations.

Are there any side-effects?
Every single vaccine authorised for use in the UK has been authorised by the MHRA and the three components of authorisation are a safety assessment, an effectiveness assessment and a manufacturing quality assessment.

Like all medicines, vaccines can cause side effects. Most of these are mild and short-term, and not everyone gets them. If you experience side-effects as a result of the COVID-19 vaccination while fasting; these will most likely be mild and only last a short while. But, if you become considerably unwell while fasting, the standard Islamic principles of illness/sickness apply in this case. This means include:

You have COVID-19 symptoms, you may need to break/abstain from fasting to ensure hydration and seek further medical attention.

Illness or considerable side effects – If you feel your condition worsens through continuing your fast, the general rules around sickness and illness while fasting applies.

How to access the vaccine in my local community?
Your local community leaders are working closely with the health service to make COVID-19 vaccination clinics more accessible locally. You can find out more information about how to access these through your GP, local pharmacy or by contacting your local vaccination clinic, for e.g. Ikhlas Community Centre in Derby city.

For more information and a full list of frequently asked questions and answers, visit www.JoinedUpCareDerbyshire.co.uk (the site can be translated into different languages) or follow on social media.

Guidance for mosque leaders, imams and organisers
The Muslim Council of Britain have developed  this guidance for imams, mosque leaders and organisers on conducting I’tikaf and Taraweeh safely this Ramadan. You can find the council’s Coronavirus information hub here.

You can also find the guidance on tips to re-opening mosques safely that was released in 2020 to support mosques on protecting their congregation and communities.

Local Videos from Imams, medical experts and scholars
[Video] What to expect when going for a COVID-19 vaccination – English
[Video] What to expect when going for a COVID-19 vaccination – Urdu translation
[Video] What to expect when going for a COVID-19 vaccination - Punjabi 
Dr Shehla Umer-Imtiaz | Derby GP at Wilson Street Surgery | Get your vaccine
Dr Saquib Irfan | Derby GP at Derby Family Medical Centre | Get your vaccine
Dr Saquib Irfan | Derby GP at Derby Family Medical Centre | Get your vaccine - Urdu
Abdul Rehman – Patient (ex-Councillor)
Aftab Rehman - Pharmacist - Peartree Surgery, Normanton

National Videos from imams, medical experts and scholars
Imam Amar Hafiz has an important message for fellow muslims regarding the COVID-19 vaccinations.

BBC video content in five South Asian languages (Urdu, Punjabi, Tamil, Sylheti and Gujarati)

COVID-19 – tackling disinformation

Social Media Assets
Download these snapshot Q & A images to share with your network across social media and WhatsApp, covering common questions about the COVID-19 vaccination.



BIMA have developed a comprehensive myth-busting social media content pack, which covers the following misconceptions:

You can download the full social media pack in the following languages:

Hands, Face, Space | https://coronavirusresources.phe.gov.uk/Hands-Face-Space-/resources/posters/
Stay alert, Stay safe | https://coronavirusresources.phe.gov.uk/stay-alert-to-stay-safe-/resources/posters/

Derby City Council Ramadan Leaflet 2021
[PDF - A4 Flyer] COVID-19 Patient vaccination journey – English
[PNG - A4 Flyer] COVID-19 Patient vaccination journey – English
[PDF - A4 Flyer] COVID-19 Patient vaccination journey – Urdu translation
[JPG - Social Asset] COVID-19 Patient vaccination journey – Urdu translation
[PDF - A4 Flyer] COVID-19 Patient vaccination journey – Bengali translation
[JPG - Social Asset] COVID-19 Patient vaccination journey – Bengali translation
COVID-19 vaccination - A guide for older adults - Urdu
COVID-19 vaccination - A guide for older adults – English
COVID-19 vaccination – A guide for older adults – Bengali
COVID-19 vaccination – A guide for older adults - Arabic
PHE_COVID-19_vaccination_guide_why_do I have_to_wait_English_v2

Useful links and information