UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, in partnership with His Excellency Sheikh Thani bin Abdullah bin Thani Al Thani, UNHCR's Eminent Advocate and the Center for Conflict and Humanitarian Studies in Doha launched UNHCR fifth annual report on Islamic philanthropy today. The report aims to highlight the important role of Islamic philanthropy tools in responding to the humanitarian needs of the most vulnerable forcibly displaced people worldwide.
The event included a presentation of the report's top findings, which indicated that UNHCR was able to help more than 1.5 million people in 2022, bringing the total refugees and internally displaced persons benefiting from the Zakat and Sadaqah contributions received by the Refugee Zakat Fund, to more than 6 million people in 26 countries since its launch in 2017. H.E. Sheikh Thani bin Abdullah bin Thani Al Thani's significant contributions assisted more than half of this number. The report also states that UNHCR has distributed 100% of the received zakat contributions to the most vulnerable refugees and displaced families without any deduction, in the form of cash or in-kind assistance such as shelter support materials, medicines and personal hygiene supplies, in addition to providing resources to establish small businesses.
On his part, Dr. Ayedh Dabsan Al Qahtani, Chief Executive Officer for the Thani bin Abdullah Foundation for Humanity and UNHCR's Patron, said: "Assisting people most in need is one of the priorities of H.E. Sheikh Thani bin Abdullah bin Thani Al Thani. Refugees and internally displaced persons have long been the focus of his attention, and he generously supported the most disadvantaged refugees and internally displaced persons around the world through UNHCR." He added: "As the holy month of Ramadan approaches, we stress the need to continue supporting those who were forced to flee, and we call on philanthropists around the globe to support them. In conclusion, we hope this report will inspire others and make a difference in the lives of those forced to flee their homes."
On his part, Khaled Khalifa, Senior Adviser to the High Commissioner for Islamic Philanthropy and UNHCR's Representative to the Gulf Cooperation Council countries, expressed his gratitude to HE Sheikh Thani bin Abdullah bin Thani Al Thani and his role in the strategic advancement of Islamic Philanthropy in response to the displacement crises, and stated: "UNHCR is able to provide humanitarian assistance to thousands of refugees and displaced persons worldwide through our close partnerships with individuals and partners, including Qatar Charity and Eid Charity, and many philanthropists who have trust in our work, and those who belief in the role of philanthropy tools in responding and alleviating the suffering of refugees, displaced persons, and their host communities." He added: "There is no doubt that our partnership with H.E. Sheikh Thani bin Abdullah bin Thani Al Thani is a model to follow, and we appreciate his continuous support and commitment to advocate for refugees and displaced persons and raise public awareness about their situation and their humanitarian needs, which are growing year after year."
The report also noted that during 2022, UNHCR obtained several additional fatwas to endorse the Refugee Zakat Fund, bringing the total number of fatwas and endorsements issued by prominent Islamic scholars and institutions from around the world to 16, thereby enhancing UNHCR's access to and distribution of Zakat to eligible refugee and displaced persons, through the Fund. Professor Dr. Sheikh Ali Al-Qaradaghi, participated in the event and expressed his support of the Sharia'h compliance of the Refugee Zakat Fund, as a measure that restores confidence in Islamic Philanthropy programmes through the United Nations
For the annual report on Islamic philanthropy, please click here.