❝Ramadan has come to you. (It is) a month of blessing, in which Allah (SWT) covers you with blessing, for He sends down Mercy, decreases sins and answers prayers… In it, Allah looks at your competition (in good deeds) and boasts about you to His angels. So show Allah goodness from yourselves..❞
The Prophet Muhammad (pbuh), as narrated by Tabarani
feeding those in need
is our Islamic tradition
The Prophet Muhammad (SAW) told us, “He is not a believer whose stomach is filled while his neighbor goes hungry” (as reported by Ibn Abbas). Sharing nutritious food with a person in need is one of the core components of Islam, and of Islamic Relief.
What’s inside an IRUSA Ramadan Food Package?
Each food packages holds food that is important to the local diet and is designed to expand easy access to vital nutrients for families. Packages differ from country to country, but many include filling staples like rice, wheat, lentils or oil, and often also sugar, canned fish or meat, and dates. To learn more about packages for specific countries, connect with us via 1-855-447-1001 or at email@example.com.
Why are food packages important?
Depending upon the size of the family served, a package can help extend the amount of food they have anywhere from a few days to two weeks—that means more food for more time, alhamdulilah. Plus, your donations help the local economy as well because the food in each package is purchased locally. This exclusive Ramadan food program is designed to complement longer-term relief and development projects that provide sustainable ways to improve living conditions—it’s a major part of IRUSA’s campaign to end hunger. Download the Ramadan Action Guide to learn more about how you can work with us for a better world, free of hunger.
IRUSA donors served hundreds of thousands of people across 35 countries in Ramadan 2018, masha’Allah. Some 2.5 Million pounds of nutritious food were distributed around the world this year—including 5,000 food packages right here at home, along with grants for food pantries. Take a look at the photo gallery below, and thank you to everyone who has been part of this remarkable Ramadan effort throughout the years!
PLEASE NOTE: During the Ramadan season, in addition to the countries listed per price category, you can choose to give a general food box to help those most in need. Islamic Relief is committed to providing the Ramadan food package in the countries you select. In the event your donation arrives late or is delayed due to other, unforeseen circumstances, Islamic Relief reserves the right to allocate your food package donation to a different country.
Here are the places food packages were delivered during Ramadan 2018
Italy (Mediterranean Refugees)
Turkey (Syrian Refugees)
Bosnia & Herzegovina
*Your donation covers the cost of two packages in these particular countries.
a pillar and a promise
the power of zakat.
Beyond being a percentage of our income, zakat is a pillar of our faith.
In the Holy Qur’an (2:110), we read, “And establish prayer and give zakat, and whatever good you put forward for yourselves—you will find it with Allah; surely Allah sees what you do.”
And it’s a promise that we must fulfill to help those in need. When you give your zakat through Islamic Relief USA, its potential grows by multiples.
During Ramadan, many Islamic Relief USA donors give zakat to support work for people who qualify under Islamic principles.
In the United States, zakat funds are distributed through partner masajid and organizations nationwide. These partners know the local residents and can confirm their eligibility.
In other countries around the world, zakat funds support projects benefiting families and communities in many ways. These include:
Emergency food • Shelter for refugees • Job training • Medication and much more—all in accordance with Islamic principles.
Islamic Relief collects and distributes zakat to those who are most in need, in accordance with Islamic guidelines. Giving your zakat through IRUSA means you can help provide emergency food, shelter for refugees, job training, medication and so much more.
According to the Holy Qur’an (9:60), there are eight categories of people who qualify to be beneficiaries of zakat:
- The poor
- The needy
- The collectors of zakat (Islamic Relief USA is an example)
- Those who hearts are to be won over
- Those burdened with debt
- In the cause of Allah (swt)
Zakat is payable at 2.5% of the wealth one possesses above the nisab. Nisab, which is equal to 3 ounces of gold, is the minimum amount of wealth one must have before they are liable to pay zakat. *The nisab amount listed is based on the latest available report for July 17, 2018 (note: This number may change daily depending on fluctuations in the gold exchange rate). Zakat is liable on gold, silver, cash, savings, investments, rent income, business merchandise and profits, shares, securities and bonds. Zakat is not paid on wealth used for debt repayment of living expenses such as clothing, food, housing, transportation, education, etc. Also, an important note: Please consider adding 2% when using Visa and Mastercard to your total zakat donation—this will compensate for any transaction fees deducted from your donation by the credit card companies, and will ensure that your intended zakat amount is paid in full.
Most scholars agree that the poor and needy are the most important categories of people to receive zakat. Given that, it is acceptable to give your entire zakat allotment to individuals who are in those groups. IRUSA follows the practice agreed upon by most scholars, which states that collectors of zakat are one of the eight groups that are eligible to receive zakat. As such, IRUSA is eligible to use up to 12.5% of donations made to zakat-specific funds for core work, including administrative and operational functions.
No matter who you send your zakat to, there’s one thing in common: The people who receive it are truly grateful. It’s more than a percentage, and more than a check—it’s a link between hearts.
While many prefer to give zakat al-Mal during Ramadan, the option to give is always open. However, when it comes to zakat al-fitr, it should be given before Eid prayer.
Well, insha’Allah we have answers for you here. Please remember that there are many rulings and differences of opinion regarding zakat. The answers we feature—derived through the consultation of a council of imams who follow the Fiqh Council of North America—are meant to provide a basic understanding of zakat. It is advised that you consult with your local imam or scholar for more detailed inquiries. Check out these zakat FAQs. And make sure to give your zakat al-fitr before you go to Eid prayer!
“The one who cares for an orphan and myself will be in Paradise like this”
and he held his two fingers together.
That’s how Al-Bukhari describes the Prophet Muhammad’s (SAW) declaration, and that demonstrates for us all the importance of caring for orphans.
Ramadan reminds us to care for the orphan children in our communities. IRUSA donors are currently supporting tens of thousands of children in nearly two dozen countries around the world; can you open your heart to an orphan this season?
Join the thousands of dedicated, caring humanitarians who are providing direct support to an orphan and his or her family for at least a full year—this can include food, clothing, healthcare, education or more. Support through IRUSA allows orphans to stay with a loving guardian by helping the guardian pay for the child’s needs …
… Like our successful orphan family support program in Bangladesh. There, IRUSA donors are supporting orphans’ families each month, while providing education and helping the guardian—often a widowed mother—start a business. This way, she no longer will need to rely on anyone else for support: She’ll be able to care for her children herself. The goal is self-reliance and independence. What an incredible gift!
Of course, every country is different, and, sometimes, orphans’ programs are customized to meet particular conditions. To learn specific details, please connect with us at 1-855-447-1001 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can provide so much to an orphan all for such a relatively small amount of money, and insha’Allah be among those the prophet considers close to him! The value of these efforts is immense, masha’Allah.
*NEW* Now IRUSA has programming available for Chad, Malawi, and Tunisia orphans.
Support and sponsor these amazing children, and show them that they are loved!
You can support an orphan's family in countries like:
*Please note: Islamic Relief USA reserves the right to allocate your donation where it is needed most if your preferred request cannot be met.
FIDYA / KAFFARA
make up broken fasts
and provide for those in need
In some circumstances, a Muslim is not able to fulfill his or her religious obligation to fast during the month of Ramadan or may want to recompense for a broken oath. Fidya and kaffara are two solutions offered that can help a Muslim compensate for not fasting or breaking other obligations—paying of fidya or kaffara also benefits members of the community who live in impoverished conditions. The following answers are meant to provide a basic understanding of fidya and kaffara, and were derived through the consultation of a council of imams who follow the Fiqh Council of North America. It is advised that you consult with your local imam or scholar for more detailed inquiries.
“Fidya” is a donation type within the Islamic tradition paid by individuals who cannot fulfill the obligation of fasting due to illness or old age. Fidya payments are meant to feed a miskeen (person in need) for each of the fasting days missed and are equivalent to the price of one meal each for two people or two meals for one person. The estimated cost, on guidance from the Fiqh Council of North America, is $10 for each day missed or $300 for all of Ramadan. That price is based on the average cost of a basic meal throughout the country. Of course, if, on average, you spend more per meal, it is permissible to adjust the price accordingly. In addition, if the donor is from a low-income family, he or she should then care for the family’s needs first before considering giving a separate fidya donation.
“Kaffara,” within the Islamic tradition, provides individuals who deliberately miss or break a day of fast during the month of Ramadan without a valid reason an opportunity to recompense for it. According to Islamic guidelines, if a person misses a day of fasting unnecessarily, he or she should either fast for 60 consecutive days or feed 60 masakeen (underprivileged people) per day. The estimated cost is $10 per person for 60 people, which equals $600 a day for each missed or broken-fast day.
Beyond Ramadan, kaffara may also be given to recompense for broken oaths or promises. In these cases, 10 masakeen (underprivileged people) should be fed for each occurrence. The amount paid should be about the average you would pay for a meal. The estimated cost is $10 per person for 10 people, which equals $100 per broken promise. If the donor is from a low-income family, and cannot afford the payment, it is recommended that he or she should fast for three days, and make sure to “protect your oath,” meaning he or she should stay true to his or her word going forward.
2018 RAMADAN REPORT
summary of programmatic information
For 25 years, the Islamic Relief USA family has been working to relieve the suffering of our sisters and brothers in humanity. During the month of Ramadan, this work increases, and the increased generosity of our donors fuels our efforts. From zakat to fidya and kaffara, your work in Ramadan results in blessings to many families here at home and around the world.
This report gives a glimpse into how.
2018 Ramadan Action Guide
working for a world free of hunger
Many individuals and organizations, like IRUSA, and coalitions like the Alliance to End Hunger are working together to build the public and political will to end hunger by supporting programs that encourage and assist with food and nutrition.
There are many ways you can do your own part to help with food and security, as you will notice through this guide.
IRUSA RAMADAN IN PHOTOS
Ramadan is a blessed month of reflection, prayer, and fasting for Muslims. During the month, observers gain a better understanding of and appreciation for the suffering of impoverished and hungry people around the world. Ramadan also serves to remind Muslims of the importance of charity, and their obligation to be charitable during the month and all throughout the year. We look forward to great things to come this Ramadan insha’Allah.