Zakat, which in Arabic means purification, is a mandatory giving required of Muslims who are financially able to give at least 2.5% of their wealth to those in need. It is taken from specific sources of wealth - including livestock, savings, trade goods, crops and minerals - and given to specific categories of recipients.
Zakat is one of the five pillars of Islam - along with prayer (salat), fasting (sawn), pilgrimage (hajj) and the profession of faith (shahada)- and is an integral part of the Muslim faith.
According to the Qur’an there are eight categories of people who are eligible to receive Zakat: The majority of today's refugees and internally displaced people (IDPs) fall under at least four of these categories: the poor, the needy, the debtors and the wayfarers.
The majority of today's refugees and internally displaced people (IDPs) fall under at least four of these categories: the poor, the needy, the debtors and the wayfarers.
In 2019, the UN Refugee Agency established the Refugee Zakat Fund to provide an alternative source of funding to refugee families displaced by war and persecution, through an effective and trusted route for people to fulfill their Zakat obligations.
USA for UNHCR is authorized to receive and distribute Zakat through the Refugee Zakat Fund. 100 percent of Zakat contributions will be delivered directly to the most vulnerable refugees and internally displaced families in Jordan, Lebanon, Yemen and Bangladesh, with a focus on families comprising widows and their children.
UNHCR is on the ground aiding refugees families, but resources are stretched too thin. Your Zakat gift can offer hope for a safe future.
Zakat funds have the potential to transform the lives of 79.5 million refugees and other displaced people around the world - of which at least 40.8 million are Muslim. Through the Refugee Zakat Fund, USA for UNHCR can direct Zakat funds to meet the most critical needs of refugees and displaced persons around the world. The Refugee Zakat Fund is backed by five fatwas from leading scholars and institutions and follows a 100 percent distribution policy.
Zakat should begin when a person’s wealth reaches Nisab - a threshold that is equivalent to the value of 3 oz. of gold - and can be paid anytime during the year.
You can use USA for UNHCR’s calculator to determine how much Zakat you need to give based on currency, and assets like gold, silver, cash or stocks.
How your Zakat can help refugees
Continuing his father’s tradition helps this refugee celebrate Ramadan in America