Fatwaa ID: 1076
Are centers such a community centers, women empowerment centers by organizations such as ICNA, ISNA, MAS zakat-eligible?
In the Name of Allaah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.
As-salaamu ‘alaykum wa-rahmatullaahi wa-barakaatuh.
Centers are not zakaah eligible, irrespective of purpose. One necessary condition is tamleek, assuming of unrestricted ownership. This cannot be done by a center. This must be done by a poor or needy person who is financially eligible to receive zakaah. It is unfortunate that many of the above mentioned organizations misuse and abuse zakaah funds. One should be very careful and cautious of where he dispenses his zakaah. Just because an organization makes a claim, it does not mean that it is true, irrespective of how prominent or big it may be.
None of the organizations above are zakaah eligible themselves. Some of them may have zakaah eligible avenues that they spend on. In such a case, the organizations are representatives (wakeel) of the donors. The organizations do not qualify as ‘aamileen. As such, the organizations may not take a single cent from the zakaah funds. They may, however, charge a service fee in excess to the zakaah funds collected. 100% of the zakaah funds must go to the poor and needy. Many organizations are guilty of abuse in this.
Many organizations also abuse zakaah funds under the guise of “fee sabeelillaah”. This is also incorrect and a deviated interpretation of the Qur’anic verse. Under no circumstances will these organizations be eligible themselves. Donors must hold them accountable. Donors must be demand complete transparency in regards to how their funds are being discharged. It is the full right of the donor to do so.
And Allaah Ta’aala knows best.
Mufti Muajul I. Chowdhury
Darul Iftaa New York
10/06/1444 AH – 04/26/2023 CE | AMG3-3681
وصل اللهم وسلم وبارك على سيدنا محمد وعلى ءاله وصحبه أجمعين
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