The concept of the National Zakat Foundation was born when shocking stories of poverty in the UK came to light. Although there are many Muslim charities in the UK, practical support for those suffering from poverty and destitution is scarce and fragmented. As a result, the National Zakat Foundation was established to provide an effective, organised and professional service to help those in need on our doorstep.
Since then, NZF has been thinking deeply about the purpose of Zakat. The two key principles behind the NZF approach are thought leadership and transformative impact.
NZF’s strategic approach to ensuring the purpose of Zakat is fulfilled, is to:
Take a holistic approach to distributing Zakat across the eight categories of Zakat recipients – providing practical support and building understanding of Islam and Muslims. This is achieved through providing practical support for those most in need and supporting Muslim community institutions and engaging in advocacy.
Distribute Zakat locally – all scholars agree that each country is worthier of its own Zakat. This is where our primary responsibility lies as we know our local context and needs the best.
Pool Zakat resources – by collecting and distributing the Zakat that is due, for the purposes which we believe God has decreed.
Those most in need in our community will feel a sense of belonging, their situation can improve and they can strive to become Zakat payers themselves. Our community will improve in its understanding of faith and its participation in wider society. This will help external perceptions of Islam and Muslims improve.
When both these aspects are achieved, Islam can flourish as a real commitment to God that inspires believers to strive for prosperity, harmony and justice for all.