Posts Tagged ‘Charity’

UK Muslims: Zakat Begins at Home

// July 29th, 2013 // 2 Comments » // Blog

If you owe Zakat and are based in England*, here are a few charities that distribute Zakat locally as is encouraged by the Sunnah:

NZF partners with many UK charities including some of those listed above, so if you just want to give to one place, I recommend them. But really, you can't go wrong with any of the charities listed inshā’Allāh. Allahu 'Alam.

Please clearly state that your donation is Zakat so that the money can be spent appropriately.
If you pay Income Tax, then don't forget to select Gift Aid (or email the charity a completed form) so that 25% can be added to the donation.

JazakumAllah khair.

*I say England rather than UK, as admittedly I do not know whether these charities work in Scotland, Wales or N.Ireland. If you are based in these areas, please do your best to find local cases or charities for your Zakat. [31/07/2013, Update] My Community UK does provide the option to distribute Zakat in various UK regions, including Scotland and Wales.

Zakat: Putting My Money Where My Mouth Is

// August 20th, 2011 // No Comments » // Blog

** Click here for an updated list of Zakat charities for 2013 **

The recent riots in the UK only made me more certain that, as a British Muslim, this country is where my Zakat belongs.

Not because my money will be going to youth projects, or urban outreach per se – but because the UK community is in dire need of the Mercy of Allāh – and Allāh's Mercy is poured down upon those who obey Him with love.

After my last post encouraging British Muslims to spend their Zakat in the UK, I am finally putting my money where my mouth is.

Tonight, I donated my Zakat to the following three charities:

It is Allāh who decides how much a penny is worth, and how far a pound can stretch. So perhaps my Zakat did not amount to very much; but if it was earned in a halal way, and was spent as it should be, I am certain Allāh will place His Blessing in it, and thereby raise my humble donation to a level that would put billionaire philanthropists to shame – inshā’Allāh. :)

I only share this info to encourage you to donate your Zakat wisely. Allāh says:

“Tell My Servants who have believed to keep up the prayer and give, secretly and in public, out of what We have provided them, before a Day comes when there will be no trading or friendship.” [Qur'an 14:31]

May Allāh accept it from me, and from those who actually do the hard work of spending the money where it is needed – āmīn!

British Muslims: Your Zakat is Needed in the UK too

// August 7th, 2011 // 4 Comments » // Blog

Image Source: National Zakat Foundation.

** Click here for an updated list of Zakat charities for 2013 **

Alhamdulillah, many of us in the UK are blessed with sufficient wealth that we can pay our bills, send our kids to school, and eat our three meals a day. In the midst of these blessings, it's easy to forget that there are people struggling all around us. The poverty in this country is more hidden than that of overseas, and our government's system of benefits and social care – though a noble ideal – is not perfect, with spending cuts, and many people slipping through the net: especially refugees, a significant percentage of whom are Muslim.

Zakat is a sacred duty, and is not like regular charity that can be given to anyone who is in need, whatever their faith and circumstance. There are specific rules about who must pay, how much, and to whom*: one of those criteria is that priority must be given to the needy people in your own land before anyone else – your neighbours.

Therefore I encourage my fellow British Muslims to seek out such cases, and support those organisations that are working selflessly to make sure that you fulfill your duty to Allāh in the right way.

Two such charities that I know of are JIMAS (http://www.jimas.org/zakahappl.htm) and the newly formed National Zakat Foundation (http://www.letusbelieve.com/). Click through to their websites to read about the tragic cases of Muslims suffering in the UK, and how your Zakat will help them, inshā’Allāh.

True, there are many overseas causes that need our help, both in the 'homelands' of India and Pakistan, as well as in East Africa, Palestine, and so on. I strongly urge you to generously donate your sadaqah (voluntary charity) to charities that work in these areas: both to their emergency campaigns, and those working on long term development.

However, Zakat is special; it must be spent as Allāh commanded – and our Muslim neighbours have more right on us than those who are far away. This is a fact of Islam that cannot, and should not be ignored. So please spend your Zakat wisely, and encourage your families and friends to do the same.

The Messenger of Allāh, Peace Be Upon Him said, “The best of companions with Allāh is the one who is best to his companions, and the best of neighbours to Allāh is the one who is the best of them to his neighbour” 
[At-Tirmidhi]

May Allāh accept it from us. May He alleviate the suffering of those near and far, and make it easy to serve and obey Him in the way that best pleases Him. Āmīn.

* Download your FREE guide to Zakat today, as prepared by 1st Ethical: http://www.1stethical.com/2011/07/20/the-official-launch-of-our-free-zakah-ebook/

 

 

Question for Computer Scientists: How to Build A Donation Tracker?

// September 9th, 2010 // No Comments » // Blog

Before I begin the official post: ‘Īd Mubarak to everyone reading! May Allāh accept it from me and from you. Āmīn! I hope to bring you my now traditional “‘Īd in the Park” picture post tomorrow, inshā’Allāh. :)

I had a random thought this evening, perhaps triggered by the charitable atmosphere of both Ramadan solemnity and ‘Īd celebrations.

With all the recent advances in technology, there must be a way for charities to keep track of an individual's donations, from the time it is received, to the moment it is spent and distributed.

In fact, I imagine it could be exactly like the online tracking system used by most courier companies. Instead of lumping all donations in one pot, each amount could be treated as an individual entity, a 'package', which is tracked all the way until it reaches the hands of the person in need. Large donations could be split into smaller packages to be spread over several projects.

I think this would be a great way to encourage people to keep giving, as they could see exactly where their money is going. Photos and messages from recipients could also be easily attached as confirmation of receipt where time and resources permit, in the same way one signs for a delivery.

It's may also be a good way to keep charities open and accountable, and hopefully prevent fraud and corruption, inshā’Allāh.

Has anyone come across such a system in place already? I'd love to see a big Muslim charity, like Islamic Relief, take up the idea. Even if it's just a pilot project in one location, such as their water project in Niger (donate now).

I may suggest it to Dr Hanni of the Muslim Charities Forum myself, next time I see him, inshā’Allāh! It would definitely be an interesting project for a Comp Sci student to manage. Any volunteers? :)

Letter from Haiti: A Haitian Muslim’s Request for Help

// January 17th, 2010 // No Comments » // Announcements, Blog

An excerpt from a message written by a Muslim based in Haiti:

My brother Didier Ambroise is missing and we have not been able to find him. My Uncle Roblain Legagneur and my cousin Namu Corvington and his wife died buried under their house.

Brother Ibrahim Abdoul Salam's house was destroyed and his cousin died.

Also brother Abou Bakr's house was crumbled and his sister died.

Many brothers and sisters are unaccounted for. We do not know if they are alive or dead. May Allāh give ease to them in whatever state they may be. Āmīn.

Read the full letter.

Donate.

Pray.

Charity Week 2009 – Day 1

// October 22nd, 2009 // 3 Comments » // Photos, Video

This year, Charity Week will run from the 19th to the 25th October, inshā’Allāh. Here's a wee video I made for my ISoc, to mark Day 1:

Please donate online NOW, writing “IMPERIAL COLLEGE” in the comments section of the donation form (we're in competition with the other participating universities). All money goes to Islamic Relief's orphan fund. So be generous! :)

Please also leave a comment below (anonymously if you wish) to let me know how much you donated, so I have an idea of the impact of the video, and also, to encourage others to follow suit, inshā’Allāh.

Update – Photos from the Henna Stall we ran today (Day 4):

Henna Me, Baby Hand 2 (My Hand!) Hand 1 Concentration I wish I could do that!

Workshop on How to Teach Qur’an to the Blind & Visually Impaired

// September 21st, 2009 // 2 Comments » // Blog

The following was forwarded to me by e-mail. Please pass it on! Also, please contact the organization directly for more information, or if you wish to mirror their work in your own locality, inshā’Allāh.

Baseera Institute will be launching on 16-20th Oct, 2009, inshā’Allāh. It is a charity dedicated to teaching the quraan to the blind and visually impaired, and is set on a similar model to Madressa Noor in South Africa.

Inshā’Allāh we will be holding braille workshops for people who wish to teach quraan to the blind and visually impaired from 16-20th Oct, 9am-5pm.

If you know anyone who is blind or visually impaired who wishes to study the quraan then bring them along, or if you are generally interested in our charity project come down.

I have attached the poster with all the details to this email [see below]. If you have any questions please do not hesitate to ask.

We also have a group on facebook ”Baseera Institute”. If you have not already done so please join and I will send you regular updates.

Click poster to enlarge.

Water: The Best Charity

// September 16th, 2009 // 1 Comment » // Blog

I once read that water is one of the best charities in Islam – annoyingly, I cannot find a reference for that statement, but it's not difficult to understand why it would be true: charity is meant to make life easier for those who have less, and water is life.

How many barren deserts do we have on the surface of the Earth, that suddenly come to life when Allāh sends the rain down?

“…thou seest the earth barren and lifeless, but when We pour down rain on it, it is stirred (to life), it swells, and it puts forth every kind of beautiful growth (in pairs).” Qur'an, 22:5

I remember reading about such desert plant life when I was little; how in some areas it may only rain once a year, for a few minutes, and then 'whoosh!': flowers begin to bloom, small animals come up from beneath the sand, and every creature makes the most of this brief blessing, before retreating from the heat of the sun.

For this reason, water projects hold a special place in my heart, and why I now encourage you to donate to them whenever you can. In this regard, please check out the following two charities:

This morning after suhoor, I was attempting to make wuḍūʼ in my bathroom upstairs, but was facing difficulty because my mum happened to be doing the same thing downstairs. All I was getting was random splatters acccompanied by scary sounding gurgling noises – but no actual, running water! I began to get annoyed because I was running out of time before Fajr – but then the thought came to me: “Aren't I blessed to have even this?”. A few seconds later, mum had finished, and the water returned. It was that easy.

But what if it hadn't?

What if it was never there to begin with?

How would I cope?

That's what we have to keep reminding ourselves every time we open the tap…

“Say, 'Just think: if all your water were to sink deep into the earth who could give you flowing water in its place?'” Qur'an, 67:30

My Big Day Out

// July 27th, 2009 // 7 Comments » // Blog

As I mentioned in my last status update, Thursday 23rd July ended up being quite a productive day for me, māshā’Allāh. For a start, I was actually active between the normal working hours of 9.30am and 4.30pm. Amazing! I didn't even manage that during my PhD.

The day involved two major meetings, each relating to the two main projects that currently dominate my unemployed life: Deaf Muslim initiatives (e.g., SignLabs), and blogging. As the content of both meetings was pretty much confidential, I'll skip the details, and just describe the basic aims.

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Viva Palestina Have Reached Gaza!

// March 9th, 2009 // 4 Comments » // Blog

Viva Palestina Update
15.30 (GMT) Monday 9th March 2009

GROWN MEN CRYING…THE SIEGE IS BROKEN… ON THE DAY THE PROPHET WAS BORN

And they entered side by side like heroes, some on foot some in their vehicles, tears, smiles, hugs, flowers. It was historic, it was legendary. Gaza we are here. We have fulfilled the promise – Viva Palestina! The lifeline from the people of Britain to you, the people of Gaza, has arrived.

We have broken the barriers, we have opened closed borders, we have defied the odds,we have overcome the challenges across thousands of miles and three continents. We are here to be with you, to embrace you, to share your tragedy with you.

After another morning of intense negotiations, a deal was reached to allow all of the members of the convoy to go through. In the end, Viva Palestina had to make the sacrifice of agreeing that some vehicles will have to cross the border from the Al Ouja Israeli controlled crossing point. This includes our mascot, the fire engine and the boat. This was due to the restrictions imposed by Egyptian law governing the Rafah Crossing.

A tearful Talat Ali told me that 'Rafah is the most beautiful crossing in the world', he also said that the time , effort and sacrifices put in by all the Viva Palestina family meant that history has been made today – on the day the prophet Mohammed (PBUH) was born.

George Galloway made an emotional speech thanking the people of Gaza for the wonderful reception and assuring them that for Viva Palestina and in our millions, “WE ARE ALL PALESTINIANS!” George also reiterated that the people of Palestine have voted and that their voice should be respected.

Today the convoy will head along the Salah Eddine road towards Gaza City witnessing along the way the destruction and death caused by the Israeli war machine. Along the way they will be greeted by the people of Gaza who will know that Viva Palestina is here and that they will NEVER BE ALONE.

Farid Arada

Sign up for e-mail updates, and donate to the cause at VivaPalestina.org

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