There are eight categories of Zakat recipients to whom Zakat can be distributed. These can be identified from the following verse:
“Indeed, [prescribed] charitable offerings are only [to be given] to the
 poor and
 the needy, and
 to those who work on [administering] it, and
 to those whose hearts are to be reconciled, and
 to [free] those in bondage, and
 to the debt-ridden, and
 for the cause of God, and
 to the wayfarer.
[This is] an obligation from God. And God is all-knowing, all-wise.”
These eight categories can be divided into three overall categories, each with distinctive direct recipients.
Overall category objectives Qur’anic Categories Direct recipients
Individual support 1,2.5,6,8 Individuals: The poor without support for basic needs, those in emergencies, and people needing support to become financially sustainable
Community development 4, 7
The fourth category literally translates as ‘winning hearts’. In today’s context, this can be interpreted as advocacy.
The seventh category literally translates as ‘God’s cause’, protecting and maintaining the Muslim community. In today’s context, this can be interpreted as community development, through building faith-based understanding and through support for key community institutions.
Zakat operations 3 Zakat administrators