Make this Holy Month count through charitable acts
19 April 2020| Last updated on 6 May 2020
The Holy Month of Ramadan is a time of reflection and charity.
In fact charity - known as 'zakat' and 'sadaqah' - is one of the biggest, most common observances for Muslims during Ramadan.
Supporting charitable acts and Dubai's support groups is also one of the easiest ways for non-Muslims to partake in the spirit of the Holy Month and support their neighbours, colleagues, and communities around them.
While the coronavirus lockdown means social distancing is required until further notice, this doesn't mean there are no ways at all to get involved in the spirit of the Holy Month.
Simply exchanging Ramadan greetings with your peers, especially 'Ramadan Kareem' at the start of the month, will go a long way. You can also try fasting with your Muslim colleagues or friends and break Iftar together online via video call, or donate to to the "10 million meals" initiative launched by HH Sheikh Mohammed.
Charitable efforts are an important part of Islam, and is even more significant during Ramadan.
Here are some charity projects happening this Ramadan across Dubai that you can join in with and support...
1. Build a shoe box care package
Most workers in the UAE live away from their families for several months at a time, and unfortunately, don't have access to basic needs that others take for granted readily available. For Ramadan this year, why not volunteer your time to help an organisation with arranging care packages for these workers? Fill your shoebox care package with fresh toiletries, socks, phone credit recharge cars, snacks and bottles of water. Once complete, distribute your boxes to workers nearby to your home - providing you are following social distancing measures currently in place.
2. Distribute water
If you're unable to distribute shoebox packages, giving water is the next best thing. Buy a large box of local water during your next visit to your local supermarket - with your permit in hand, of course. On your way home, head to a construction site or an area where you know there will be lots of workers, and drop off some water. Take care to ensure you are following social distancing measures, and remember your mask and gloves.
3. Donate to the "10 million meals initiative"
For Ramadan 2020, and in light of the coronavirus outbreak, HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum has launched the "10 million meals" campaign. It is the country's largest community initiative, and aims to provide food for those in need throughout the Holy Month.
Donations can be made online, via SMS, via bank transfer, or as in-kind donations, and donations start at as little as 8 Dhs.
It is the nation's biggest food distribution drive, and will help those who have been left unemployed or have have had salary cuts because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
4. SMS your Iftar donation
Dar Al Ber Society is a philanthropic and charitable organisation based in Dubai that makes donating super easy for all. For 2020, donations can be made to their Ramadan initiatives directly through your smart phone via SMS. Options are AED 20, AED 50, AED 100 and AED 200 or you can transfer money via other means. Find out more by clicking here.
5. Donate to "Together We Are Good"
For 2020, UAE citizens are called to support Abu Dhabi's Authority of Social Contribution – Ma’an’s ‘Together We Are Good’ programme. The ‘Together We Are Good’ programme is the first project of Ma’an’s Social Fund that allows community contributions to help tackle social challenges, and donors are able to participate by contributing financially.
Send an SMS to 6670 (AED1000), 6678 (AED500), 6683 (AED100) and 6658 (AED50). Or, you can also call 8005-MAAN for volunteering and in-kind and financial contributions above AED1,000 or send messages on WhatsApp on 0543055366.
6. Prevent interruption on UAE children's education
Dubai Cares launched its nation-wide fundraiser, "Education Uninterrupted", to provide support for UAE children who come from low-income households. The initiative targets young students who have no access to ICT tools such as computers and tablets, creating a barrier to their digital and online education.
Donations can be made here: http://www.dubaicares.ae/donate
For SMS donation, text "donate" to 9030 (for AED 30), 9090 (for AED 90), 9300 (for AED 300), or 9900 (for AED 900). You may also donate old and unused laptops, computers, tablets, and phones to Dubai Cares.
7. Support those with life-threatening illnesses
Join Al Jalila Foundation in providing quality medical education, research, and treatment to the needy who have life-threatening illnesses. Funds raised will support patients in critical care due to cancer, diabetes, heart diseases, and more.
Visit http://www.aljalilafoundation.ae/donate to donate, by SMS, or through bank transfers.