English soccer teams pause their match to allow players to break their Ramadan fasts
via @if24hd

An otherwise forgettable pause during the Crystal Palace and Leicester City Premier League match Monday night in England turned out to be a beautiful display of sportsmanship from two teams that definitely had their priorities straight.

During the 35th minute of the match, Crystal Palace's goalkeeper Vicente Guaita held onto the ball instead of making a goal kick. This allowed Leicester's center-back Wesley Fofana and Palace's midfielder Cheikhou Kouyate to break their Ramadan fasts.

The brief, voluntary stoppage gave Fofana a moment to guzzle some water and for Kouyate to down an energy gel. The stoppage happened shortly after sundown because Muslims are supposed to avoid food or drink while the sun is out during the month-long holiday.

This year, Ramadan runs from April 12 to May 2012.



Ramadan is the Arabic name for the ninth month in the Islamic calendar. It's the holiest of Islamic months and is part of the Five Pillars of Islam. The Five Pillars are principles that are ordered by God. Muslims believe that the first verses of their holy book, the Qu'ran, were given to Prophet Mohammed during the month.

Muslims fast during the daylight hours throughout Ramadan feel closer to God and strengthen their resolve.

Muslims observe the fast by having a meal before dawn, then going without any food or drink until sundown. One can imagine how hard it is for an athlete to play at a professional level for an entire month without having proper nutrition or hydration.

Soccer players can run up to nine miles in a typical 90-minute match and elite players can burn up to 3,400 calories.

Fofana thanked the opposing club for their support on Twitter. "That's what makes football wonderful," he said.

Last week, Leicester City boss Brendan Rodgers took Fofana out of the game at the 60-minute mark in a 3-0 win over West Brom to allow him to break his fast.

It's believed that Monday's match was the first time in Premier League history that a game was stopped to allow players to break the Ramadan fast. The decision was made before the game in a meeting between team captains.

Although fasting has to make it a lot harder for players to perform on the field, Rodgers believes it gives them more strength. "I've worked with lots of players with devotion to their faiths and for a lot of the guys it gives them strength," he said in a press conference.

"He's finding an incredible strength to play continuously and train during Ramadan. He's a special talent and a big player for us," Rogers continued.

In the world of professional soccer, a single game, score, or play can have huge consequences for players and their organizations. So it's pretty incredible to see two teams put their competitive differences aside for a brief moment to focus on something that's bigger than the game. It's also a wonderful display of religious tolerance for the tens of thousands of people watching the game.

Photo by Louis Hansel on Unsplash
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This story was originally shared on Capital One.

Inside the walls of her kitchen at her childhood home in Guatemala, Evelyn Klohr, the founder of a Washington, D.C.-area bakery called Kakeshionista, was taught a lesson that remains central to her business operations today.

"Baking cakes gave me the confidence to believe in my own brand and now I put my heart into giving my customers something they'll enjoy eating," Klohr said.

While driven to launch her own baking business, pursuing a dream in the culinary arts was economically challenging for Klohr. In the United States, culinary schools can open doors to future careers, but the cost of entry can be upwards of $36,000 a year.

Through a friend, Klohr learned about La Cocina VA, a nonprofit dedicated to providing job training and entrepreneurship development services at a training facility in the Washington, D.C-area.

La Cocina VA's, which translates to "the kitchen" in Spanish, offers its Bilingual Culinary Training program to prepare low-and moderate-income individuals from diverse backgrounds to launch careers in the food industry.

That program gave Klohr the ability to fully immerse herself in the baking industry within a professional kitchen facility and receive training in an array of subjects including culinary skills, food safety, career development and English language classes.

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This article originally appeared on 12.02.19


Just imagine being an 11-year-old boy who's been shuffled through the foster care system. No forever home. No forever family. No idea where you'll be living or who will take care of you in the near future.

Then, a loving couple takes you under their care and chooses to love you forever.

What could one be more thankful for?

That's why when a fifth grader at Deerfield Elementary School in Cedar Hills, Utah was asked by his substitute teacher what he's thankful for this Thanksgiving, he said finally being adopted by his two dads.

via OD Action / Twitter

To the child's shock, the teacher replied, "that's nothing to be thankful for," and then went on a rant in front of 30 students saying that "two men living together is a sin" and "homosexuality is wrong."

While the boy sat there embarrassed, three girls in the class stood up for him by walking out of the room to tell the principal. Shortly after, the substitute was then escorted out of the building.

While on her way out she scolded the boy, saying it was his fault she was removed.

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One of the boy's parents-to-be is Louis van Amstel, is a former dancer on ABC's "Dancing with the Stars." "It's absolutely ridiculous and horrible what she did," he told The Salt Lake Tribune. "We were livid. It's 2019 and this is a public school."

The boy told his parents-to-be he didn't speak up in the classroom because their final adoption hearing is December 19 and he didn't want to do anything that would interfere.

He had already been through two failed adoptions and didn't want it to happen again.

via Loren Javier / Flickr

A spokesperson for the Alpine School District didn't go into detail about the situation but praised the students who spoke out.

"Fellow students saw a need, and they were able to offer support," David Stephenson said. "It's awesome what happened as far as those girls coming forward."

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He also said that "appropriate action has been taken" with the substitute teacher.

"We are concerned about any reports of inappropriate behavior and take these matters very seriously," Kelly Services, the school the contracts out substitute teachers for the district, said in a statement. "We conduct business based on the highest standards of integrity, quality, and professional excellence. We're looking into this situation."

After the incident made the news, the soon-to-be adoptive parents' home was covered in paper hearts that said, "We love you" and "We support you."

Religion is supposed to make us better people.

But what have here is clearly a situation where a woman's judgement about what is good and right was clouded by bigoted dogma. She was more bothered by the idea of two men loving each other than the act of pure love they committed when choosing to adopt a child.