Zakah is one of the five pillars of Islam. It is obligatory on every sane Muslim to pay this. However, they must have held a minimum amount of wealth (“nisab”) for one whole year.
What is wealth?
Zakah is payable on cattle, crops, gold, silver, and money held in accounts as savings. Zakah is not payable for instance on food, clothes and the car that you drive.
How much should I pay?
Zakah is set at 2.5%. You can work out how much you have to pay by applying 2.5% to your savings. However, bear in mind that you must have held it for 12 months.
How do we apply your Zakah?
The virtues of zakah are significant. It essentially means growth and purification. It’s about purifying one’s wealth in the way prayer purifies one’s soul. It is a counterbalance to greed and selfishness. It is a mercy for the poor and destitute as it liberates them for the humiliation of begging. It transforms lives and alleviates poverty.
The rules of zakah means we have to ensure your money is spent strictly on the poor. Orphan children fall into this category. We also spend a small percentage for payment for employees who distribute zakah in Africa on our behalf. This is also a permitted category. We do not mix these funds for use on any of our projects such as madrasah construction or water projects.
01 Feed the Poor
We distribute food to the poor, orphans, widows and the elderly throughout the year. We feed an average of around 2,000 to 3,000 people in Ramadan alone. We deliver food packages to rural villages in Zanzibar for the poor who are eligible to receive zakah. We also distribute food on other smaller islands like Pemba and Uzi.
02 Livelihood Projects
Our livelihood projects are designed to help those have the skills to set up a business. Through this they can become independent. We use your zakah money to carefully invest in the poor to climb our of poverty and break the cycle. The Prophet (SAW) said:
“ It is better that a person should take a rope and bring a bundle of wood on his back to sell so that Allah may preserve his honour, than that he should beg from people (regardless of whether they give to him or refuse him). ”
Those we help become mentors for others. Our projects are very diverse and too many to list. We’ve tailored cash injections around individual needs and skills sets. This empowers them in an area they feel comfortable to earn their living from. For example we have:
helped groups of widows start their own poultry businesses;
assisted fishermen with boats and equipment; and
provided milling machines to start up rice and flour businesses.
03 Orphan Homes
We use your donations to build orphan homes which cost between £3,000 – £3,500. We replace shacks with solid breeze block home for orphan families. Other ways in which we use your zakah is for repairing existing orphan homes. We work also on islands like Pemba. This island has one of the highest numbers of orphans and widows in Zanzibar.
We have helped to build many homes for orphan families, transforming their makeshift shelter homes into solid, sustainable, constructs. Give an orphan family a home they can live in with dignity and pride. Abu Hurayra reported that the Prophet (SAW), said:
“The person who strives on behalf of the widows and poor is like those who strive in the way of Allah and like those who fast in the day and pray at night. ”