Sweet free for Dry July

Shaikh Rahman will participate in the Dry July movement. (Joe Mastroianni). 288170_02

While the Dry July movement encourages participants to go alcohol free for a month to raise money for cancer, Tarneit resident Shaikh Rahman is instead choosing to abstain from something else.

Mr Rahman was raised as a Muslim and drinking alcohol is imperssible according to Islamic beliefs.

“Alcohol is not an everyday reality like some of my close friends, acquaintances and community members,” he said.

Instead, Mr Rahman will cut out sugar and sweets to show that anyone can get involved in the initiative.

“Cancer has touched our lives in one-way or the other, we all know someone who was affected by this life-ending disease,” he said.

“So far, 20639 people are going dry and $2,075,200 have been raised to help people affected by cancer. I feel happy to be a dot in that picture.”

Mr Rahman believes the toll cancer can have on the financial and mental health of sufferers and family members requires more support, and he knows this first hand.

“My dad was a great man just like all dads out there, he was diagnosed with an advanced stage of esophagus cancer where no surgical treatment could save him,” he said.

“He went through a few chemotherapy before leaving us for eternity within 6 months of the findings.”

Dry July began in 2008, when three friends decided to abstain from alcohol and asked friends and family to sponsor them in the hopes of raising $3000 to buy a TV for their local hospital’s waiting room.

Fatima Halloum