Ramadan is here once again and everyone is reminded of this: “Ramadan is an honourable and blessed month, and the rewards for generosity are multiplied in it”. Zakat is one of the five pillars of Islam and during Ramadan, charity is increased , along with worshipping and other acts of pleasing the Lord.You all know that The Pink Tarha Ladies are not Muslims but no matter what our religions are, everyone of us should be charitable for every act of charity brings us one step closer to heaven. Charity is not only beneficial to those who receive it but more for those who give. We have a lot of brother and sisters in Riyadh who are in dire need of our help and support. Generosity knows no bounds that’s why we would like to share with you five good deeds and the five organizations you can donate to, not only during this Ramadan season, but any time, any day, every day, all throughout the year.
1. Donate at Half A Date
Half A Date is charity organization in Riyadh that’s focused on giving back to the community. The origin of their name “Half A Date” came from Al Tirmidhi, Hadith 1376 which says “Do not turn away a poor man… even if all you can give is half a date. If you love the poor and bring them near you… Allah will bring you near Him on the Day of Resurrection.” This quote also reminds us of what Mother Theresa once said that “If you can’t feed a hundred people, then just feed one.” It reminds us that we don’t need to have much for us to be able to give. It only needs half a date even for just one man to begin sowing acts of kindness. Half A Date organizes food drives, clothing collections and help to families who are currently in financial strains. Recently, they had the Ramadan Project which asked for donations of food (rice, salt, beans, etc.). See their Facebook page for a heartwarming update on this; they helped over 3,000 men with their distribution of goods. For more information, on how, when and where to donate (they have several drop-off points), contact:
2. Fill the Fridge of Feed The Need
Feed The Need’s idea is simple: get a fridge and fill it up with free food! Feed The Need KSA is inspired by Feed The Need Bahrain which started in May 2014 as an avenue to share food with the community and help prevent hunger in Bahrain. (Feed The Need Bahrain now has 20 refrigerators and drop-off points!) Feed The Need KSA is amping its efforts and has now refrigerators in four locations in Riyadh (see map of fridges here). Most of what the fridge need are ready-to-eat meals, boxes of juices, bread, and bottles of water. In that way, people who are in need of food can just open the fridge and get food and drinks easily. This Ramadan, Feed The Need is asking for donations of juice, water, laban and fruits for the fridges.
3. Pay It Forward in KSA
Pay It Forward KSA, according to their website, is “a social initiative with an underlying concept of repayment of a good deed to other random people instead of the original benefactor to leave a positive impact on the lives of others as part of everyday activities, to transmit Islamic values, foster a more caring and giving society and empower communities through spreading selfless acts of kindness.” This reminds us of the coffee shop generosity where you pay for a cup of coffee for anyone who might need it. They have every day ideas on how you can do you part in making this world a better place to live in. They also have ideas to provide educators programs that will teach students to pay it forward. They also feature social responsibility practices and projects of several companies that inspires and encourages others to do the same. They’re having an all-female event called “Craft It Forward: The Art of Giving” on June 20-21, 2016 that will showcase local arts and crafts. Register now!
4. Volunteer at Zahra Breast Cancer Association and/or the Saudi ADHD Society
A few years back, I was looking for volunteering opportunities in Riyadh and I wasn’t able to find one. Or maybe I wasn’t looking hard enough because I was afraid that they will all be speaking in Arabic and I won’t understand a thing… some volunteer am I! Haha! But now, there are volunteering opportunities in Riyadh. One of them is the Zahra Breast Cancer Association, a healthcare charity organization known for their campaigns on breast cancer awareness (remember the 10KSA?) and support for patients and survivors. They have ongoing breast cancer awareness programs and they continuously support the scientific research and studies on this dreaded disease. If you want to participate, you can volunteer for the ZBCA. The Saudi ADHD Society, on the other hand, aims to raise the quality of life by those who are affected by Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). They aim to raise awareness among families and members of the community and educate people on the proper ways to deal with children with ADHD and also to collaborate with the Ministry of Health to focus on diagnosis and treatments. You can check out how to be a volunteer here and see what most volunteers do at the AFTA.
5. Foster or adopt a pet from Open PAWS
Kindness and charity don’t stop with people. We can also extend our tender loving care to animals. There are hundreds of animals who are in dire need of care in Riyadh. Just look outside your houses, cats and dogs roam the streets. Without proper animal shelters, they are left on their own. Open PAWS, founded in March 2010, aims to provide education and guidance for correct animal care, reduce the number of unwanted pet animals, and give animals a loving home they deserve. They’re calling for better pet shops in the city (as you know, Riyadh is known for horrible pet shops that don’t know how to take care of the animals they have) and better ways on how to care and be responsible for pets. They facilitate pet fostering and adoptions. We can help by fostering an animal in need, promoting responsible animal care, and donations.
We salute all the people behind these noble causes. The list above are only some of the ways you can spread kindness and happiness in Riyadh. If you have more suggestions and recommendations, don’t hesitate to share! There’s nothing too small or too huge an action to be good every day. 😉