What is Waqf?
In Arabic, Waqf means to stop or contain. In Islamic terms, it is a religious endowment. This voluntary action is an ongoing dedication of one’s wealth to benefit a community. An example of this would be to build a hospital or a school.
A person can’t own a waqf donation and it isn’t something that can be sold. The benefits of a waqf continues through generations.
Waqf with Islamic Relief
Islamic Relief delivers Waqf through its subsidiary, International Waqf Fund. Donations are put into sharia compliant investments and the profits are used to support our international development work. Furthermore, donations are also re-invested to aid growth.
Origins of Waqf
Some of the Muhajiroon didn’t like the water of Madinah as it was hard to drink. They were more used to the sweet Zamzam water in Makkah. In Madinah there was a well called Rumah and its water tasted similar to Zamzam. However, the owner of the well was greedy and charged people for even a handful of water.
The Prophet (SAW) offered a garden in Paradise for the one who would buy the well. When Uthman (RA) heard this, he purchased the well after lengthy negotiations and left it as an endowment.
Over time, date palms grew around the well and the authorities sold the dates. The sale of dates has produced a healthy income and many people around the world have benefitted from it.
The water well has since benefited lots of people, all adding to the good deeds of a man that passed away over a thousand years ago.
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Frequently Asked Questions
What is an example of a famous Waqf?
Al Azhar Mosque and University in Egypt is one of the oldest universities in the world, it was established over 1,000 years ago as a Waqf donation.