Zakat Questions & Answers

Zakat is “mandatory form of alms for all Muslims who are able to pay it, and is one of the five pillars of Islam. Through Zakat, Muslims are required to give a proportion – traditionally defined as one-fortieth, or 2.5% – of their accumulated wealth after it has been in their possession for a lunar year for the benefit of the poor or needy (and other recipients), in addition to a small annual payment (Zakat al-Fitr) during Ramadan.” Act of Faith, 2015.

Your Zakat donation will support the poorest and most vulnerable Palestine refugees with food and cash assistance. UNRWA is the only agency mandated to protect the rights and dignity of Palestine refugees, many of whom rely only on UNRWA to meet their most basic needs.

Any zakat donation will be tracked and segregated into a sub-account specifically earmarked for food and cash assistance to the most vulnerable Palestine refugees and administered within one lunar year.

UNRWA’s food and cash assistance programme provides regular support to the most vulnerable refugees living in abject poverty, and in particular those who cannot meet their basic needs. In Syria, this means around 430,000 people, who due to repeated displacements and the erosion of social and economic capital are now completely reliant on humanitarian assistance, and received cash assistance in 2017. In Jordan and Lebanon, 85-95 per cent of Palestine refugees are now food insecure and face extremely limited economic opportunities. And in Gaza, where employment opportunities have been stifled by the decade-old blockade – the unemployment rate remains among the highest worldwide – and almost one million Palestine refugees are dependent on UNRWA for emergency food assistance, a tenfold increase on the 100,000 that required such support in 2000.

UNRWA will record income received and distributed from Zakat donations in its Annual Operational Report, which will be published on our website.

You can donate your Zakat online through UNRWA’s secure donation site: donate.unrwa.org or by bank transfer.