What is Waqf?
Waqf, in the Arabic language, means to stop, contain, or preserve.
In Islamic terms, Waqf is a religious endowment, a voluntary and permanent dedication of one’s wealth to benefit a community by offering a service that is useful to society, such as a hospital or a school.
A Waqf donation cannot ever be owned by any person and it never gets gifted, inherited, or sold, its benefit continues through generations.
Origins of Waqf
Following the hijrah to Madina, some of the Muhajiroon found the water of Madinah difficult to drink, as they were used to the sweeter Zamzam in Makkah. There was a well, named Rumah whose water tasted similar to Zamzam but the owner insisted on charging, even for a handful of water.
The Prophet (SAW) offered a garden in Paradise for one that would secure the well and upon hearing this Uthman (RA) purchased the well after protracted negotiations and left it as an endowment.
Over time, date palms grew around the well, which were cultivated by the authorities and the dates sold, with the proceeds distributed around the world.
What began as a water well for a single community has benefited thousands upon thousands of people, all adding to the good deeds of a man that passed away over a thousand years ago.
Waqf with Islamic Relief
Islamic Relief delivers Waqf through its subsidiary, International Waqf Fund. Donations are invested in sharia compliant investments and the profits are then used to support our international development work, as well as a re-invested, to ensure it keeps growing, year-on-year.