Zakat is one of the five pillars of Islam.
To those who believe and do good deeds and establish Salah and pay Zakah, their reward is with the Sustainer; and no fear shall come on them, nor shall they grieve.’Quran (2:227)
Zakah, is derived from the verb zaka, (which signifies “to thrive,” “to be wholesome, “to be pure”) means purification. Giving up of a portion of the wealth one may possess in excess of what is needed for sustenance is to “purify” or legalize it so that the remainder may lawfully be used by the alms giver. This rotation of wealth is a way to balance social and economic inequalities.
Zakah in spirit is an act of worship, an act of service to humanity; the social services of the fortunate ones for the less fortunate. Its importance is understood by the fact that the Qur’an treats it at par with salat (prayer).
The Qur’an stipulates the eight (8) specific uses of Zakah within the community:Qur’an (9:60)
‘The alms are only for the poor and the needy, and for those employed in connection therewith, and for those whose hearts are to be reconciled, and for the freeing of slaves, and for those in debt, and for the cause of Allah, and for the wayfarer’
At Sindh Development Organization, we spent your Zakah on the following:
- Fuqara are the poor, Sindh Development Organization uses your Zakat to provide for their needs related to sustenance or for the provision medical health care.
- Masakeen are better off than the Fuqara since they have the ability to find a certain percentage of what will suffice them or more.
- Aamileen are the people who collect Zakah to distribute it to those who deserve. Bin Qutab Foundation uses the fund to pay for those employees only who collect and administer the Zakat.
- Muallafat ul Quloob are those who are sympathetic towards Islam and/or wish to enter Islam. We do not have access towards this category at the moment, but would provide support only if we are able to ascertain the fact that the person is not being forced towards Islam or is coming towards the religion temporarily for the use of money only and with due permission from the donor.
- To free a person from slavery. We do not have access towards this category at the moment, but would provide support only if we are able to verify the case and with due permission from the donor.
- Those in Debt. We do not have access towards this category at the moment, but would provide support only if we are able to verify the case and with due permission from the donor.
- Fi Sabeelillah: For those who are away from home in the path of Allah. We do not have access towards this category at the moment, but would provide support only if we are able to verify the case and with due permission from the donor.
Zakah must be paid on gold, silver, merchandise for owned businesses, cash in bank account, cattle and crops. You must pay Zakah on the items listed above if they have been in your possession for a year. You do not have to pay it on your personal items that do not bring you wealth, such as your vehicles, clothes, shelter or food.
Sindh Development Organization dedicates Zakat to helping orphans, widows and the elderly, your donation in this context will most probably go towards supporting these people through donations of food, water, shelter, medication or clothing.