Zakat is one of the five pillars of Muslim religion and it means to give the ones who are less fortunate, it is a form of charity that is obligated in Muslim world. During the month of Ramadan, the charity and willingness to fulfil the zakat grows. Aid in the form of mostly food, but also other necessities has been delivered across the country as well as abroad. Government, non-governmental organizations and charity organizations are the one implementing this actions.
Mass iftar dinners, an occasion to break the fast for the faithful, is absent this year as the pandemic forces people to hold back on such traditions. Charities instead will deliver food packages and meals by in person going from home to home.
The Turkish Red Crescent (Kızılay) is among the most prominent charities and it aims to reach some 8 million people with a campaign exclusive to the month.
The Red Crescent allocated a budget of about TL 225 million for its Ramadan charity work and it will seek out donors for its campaign. 60,000 volunteers will work to deliver and organize the aid. The charity will operate 26 soup kitchens and 44 mobile kitchens to deliver iftar meals to more than 2.2 million people.
Outside Turkey, the Red Crescent will be active in 18 countries and deliver 102,000 food packages throughout the month. It will also provide 110,000 clothing items to the needy in other countries, as part of its campaign for Ramadan Bayram (Eid al-Fitr) that marks the end of the fasting month and when people wear new clothes exclusively bought for the occasion.
It also provided iftar meals to 4,482 orphans abroad, including in Afghanistan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Indonesia, Palestine, South Sudan, the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, Senegal, Somalia and Sudan.
There are over 140 million orphans in the 2.2 billion child population of the world. One-third of the world’s orphans are in Syria, Iraq, East Turkistan, Somalia, Mali, Sudan, Palestine, Afghanistan, Central African Republic, Egypt, Kenya, Nigeria, Yemen, Myanmar and Algeria.
The Turkish Red Crescent, which carries out special activities for children and orphans as part of its humanitarian aid activities, also builds complexes to meet their needs, from schools to playgrounds.
The agency also provides food, clothing and stationery for children and it supplies the necessary equipment for extracurricular activities, such as arts and sports which contribute to children’s personal development
The Turkish Diyanet Foundation (TDV), associated with the country’s Presidency of Religious Affairs (Diyanet), will be active in 75 countries throughout the month and deliver aid worth TL 61 million ($7.4 million). The name of this campaign is “Remember Your Sister and Brother” for Ramadan aid and they will deliver aid to more than 560,000 people in 14 countries, including iftar meals. In association with Diyanet, it will also gift Qurans to 90,000 Muslims in 36 countries.
The Humanitarian Aid Foundation (IHH), another prominent Turkish charity, is behind the “Hope in Ramadan” campaign that seeks to bring donations to about 2 million people across the world. The charity is active in 50 countries throughout the month, delivering food as well as cash in the form of fitr, a type of alms exclusive to Ramadan and zakat.
This is just some of the organizations that are providing aid, there is much more organizations and foundations across Turkey doing this type of charity during the month of Ramazan. Also on local level, government and social foundations are distributing food bought by the government of Turkey.