Qatar Charity has launched its 2014 Ramadan Campaign. Jessica Bailey Ackerman met up with Hafedh Mohammed Ali, the team’s head of creative and production, to look at how people can get involved.
Charitable giving, better known as zakat, is ingrained in the fundamental fabric of the Islamic culture. Zakat is defined as a compulsory giving, of a set proportion of one’s wealth, to charity. But beyond that it is part of the very nature of Islam to help those less fortunate, and is especially significant during the month of Ramadan.
As the slight crescent moon (hilal) is sighted, symbolising a new beginning, Muslims alike begin their blessed month of fasting. For each individual Ramadan has its own special meaning which typically centres on self-reflection, repentance, community, charity, fasting and prayer. It is a time where people draw closer to God and their internal moral compass guides them towards a sense of social responsibility.
This year, Qatar’s largest and most recognised charitable body, Qatar Charity, has launched its ‘Our Skies Glitter with Giving’ 2014 Ramadan campaign.
We met up with the charity’s head of creative and production, Hafedh Mohammed Ali, to get a better understanding of the campaign and to find out how people in Qatar can get involved.
He elaborates on the concept explaining ‘the campaign is about the light of the Ramadan moon, reflecting its goodness all over the earth.
‘When people donate they want to see how their donations are put into effect on the ground,’ Hafedh added. ‘We want to make charity simplified for those who want to contribute. We have identified five different fields for people to give with tailor made products for people to choose specifically what they want to give.’
The five different fields for giving are Water and Sanitation, Education, Health, Social Housing and Economic Empowerment. Qatar Charity does not only focus on one specific area of need; their aim is to reach out far and wide across the globe.
When it comes to location, Qatar Charity spreads its wings across Asia, Europe and Africa, doing good deeds in countries such as Burkina Faso, Comoros Islands, Kenya, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Somalia, Sudan and Tunisia, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Pakistan, Palestine, Yemen, Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo and the United Kingdom. The organisation has also partnered with some of the world’s most renowned charities such as UNESCO, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, UNIDO, WHO and UNICEF from their 60 Qatar Charity offices worldwide.
Every year Qatar Charity launches a Ramadan campaign, and after last year’s stellar results they are eager to see what this year’s will have in store.
‘From last year’s Ramadan campaign, we were able to implement more than 5,000 projects and we generated more than US $240 million [QR874 million] which went to multiple fields,’ Hafedh elates.
‘We can’t wait to see what this year will bring and what a great impact it will have for so many in need.’
Although Ramadan is a Muslim tradition, this doesn’t mean that only Muslim people should help those in need. Hafedh emphasises ‘we are a humanitarian organisation which supports people everywhere, regardless of culture, religion or race.
‘We are not exclusively asking only Muslims to donate; anyone can get involved.’
There really is no excuse not to help in anyway you can. Qatar Charity has made it exceptionally easy with different donation solutions, big and small, catering to anyone who wants to give. You can donate by using one of the following channels:
• For online donations visit www.qcharity.org/ramadan
• Call the Hotline 44667711.
• Make a bank transaction to Qatar Charity, Qatar Islamic Bank 200000126.
• Donate with your phone through the following SMS channels:
For Zakat project Text ‘Zakat’ to 92642 (QR100)
For Health project Text ‘Health’ to 92642 (QR100)
For Education project Text ‘Edu’ to 92642 (QR100)
For Orphans project Text ‘Orphan’ to 92642 (QR100)
For Development project Text ‘Dev’ to 92642 (QR100).
Other ways you can give this Ramadan:
This local charity is aiming to improve the lives of workers living in industrial area of Doha by collecting and distributing unwanted clothes and household items from around Qatar to the workers’ camps. Email email@example.com for a list of drop off points, or go to www.dohnates.com.
The #redcardhunger campaign, under the banner of UNRWA USA, is trying to help more than one million Palestinian refugees that are going hungry. You can either join the selfie campaign or donate food aid from now until the end of Ramadan. For more details go to www.unrwausa.org/ramadan
Help raise 5,000 iftar packs for 5,000 families in five different countries, Gaza, Syria, Gambia, Bangladesh and Burma. One iftar pack will feed a family for the entire duration of Ramadan. For more info go to www.human-aid.eu/ramadan-2014-iftar-appeal