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Why Should You Sponsor an Orphan?

Helping orphans is one of the most highly revered forms of charitable giving in Islam.

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Helping orphans is one of the most highly revered forms of charitable giving in Islam.

There are almost 153 million orphans in the world. So many of those children who are now orphans have lost both of their parents due to wars, illness, and even natural disasters. Now, as we live in a world where COVID-19 has become an everyday reality, more and more children are left as orphans. 

Many have witnessed parents or caretakers die from this virus. Almost 1.1 million children lost a primary caregiver between March 2020 and April 2021, according to The Wall Street Journal

“Once a child loses their parent or primary caregiver, the tragedy is something they live with for the entire duration of their childhoods,” said Susan Hillis, an epidemiologist at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in The Wall Street Journal report. 

These children who are now left as orphans need all our love and support to grow up and pursue their dreams. The environment they grow up in plays a huge role in the type of adults they’ll be.

Motivation to do well in school is much harder without that support, and it could easily lead to these children giving up on their dreams at a young age. Orphans and other vulnerable children need support early on, and they often choose to pay that support forward in their dream career paths and personal goals.

Orphans who have lost their parents in wars are more prone to suffer from trauma due to the horrific environment they had to grow up in. 

“I lost my house during the war … I don’t want to remember my house. I wish I would die so I can go to my mother,” said Aisha al-Shinbary, an 8-year-old who lost her mother during an Israeli airstrike, and lost her father due to illness. Aisha now resides at an orphanage, where she wakes up and draws rockets because of how traumatized she is from the airstrikes, according to an Al Jazeera report. She lost the people in her life who meant the most to her, and at such a young age. All she dreams of now is being reunited with her parents. 

Aisha’s story is similar to thousands and thousands of more orphans who have lost their parents. Those who grew up with both parents may never be able to truly understand what it’s like, but that doesn’t mean they can’t help orphans and vulnerable children. 

Orphans in Islam

The Quran mentions the yatim nearly 25 times. This is to keep the term ingrained in our minds, along with parents. Both are our responsibility, and we must treat them accordingly with care and kindness. 

“And to parents, you shall be good—as well as to close relatives, orphans, and the indigent” (Surat Al-Baqarah, 2:83).  

Yatim in Arabic translates to the word “orphan.”  God places the term orphan between our parents and close relatives, and then mentions the indigent. At one end of this spectrum, the Quran associates the orphan with our nearest family, and on the other with the most vulnerable in need.

This makes helping orphans one of the most highly revered forms of charitable giving in Islam. God praises those who help and support orphans. 

How can you help?

There are several ways you can help support an orphan. Zakat Foundation of America, a humanitarian organization based in Chicago, has been serving humanity for 20 years. They have been helping orphans from the start because they believe all children are our children. Their orphan sponsorship program benefited 634,116 orphans and vulnerable children in 15 countries, providing nutrition, health care, education fees, and in some cases even shelter. 

With help from generous donors, Zakat Foundation of America reaches and uplifts orphan and vulnerable children every day. The organization uses 100% of every donation to support these children. It does not take any administrative fees from orphan sponsorship donations. 

It will change how orphan sponsorship looks in the humanitarian world — for the better. Donate or sponsor a child in need today.

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