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Humanitarian issues hit the world we live in continuously, the damage and process vary. For that reason, Islamic philanthropy-based attempts to relieve those issues have to be dynamic. Educating our contemporary society regarding religious matters is a challenge that never stops calling philanthropists. Waqf endowment included in the attempts.

Waqf comprises many kinds, one of those is cash waqf, an Islamic philanthropy that advanced in early 2000’s. The original idea of cash waqf that surged to Indonesia was investment or social waqf. The law that today regulates its practice also came up recently. Indonesian Ulema Council (Majelis Ulama Indonesia/MUI) gave their fatwa in May 2002, affirmed cash waqf as lawful with one condition: the value of cash waqf must be perpetual. Another regulation that strengthened the fatwa came into force in 27th October 2004: Undang-Undang No. 41 year 2004 on Waqf. Two years after, Government Regulation No. 42, Year 2006 on the Process of Waqf came into force in 15th December 2006. That’s legal matters in brief. This article addresses, however, how cash waqf is the possible, creative answer to the issues our society faces.

Perhaps not the most urgent, but clearly the ones that happen in many parts of the world: humanitarian crises. Many of those need support and assistance from Islam community. Cash waqf by Global Wakaf Foundation (GWF) focuses on cash waqf for humanity, with tagline “cash waqf, life solution.” Cash waqf becomes a choice to relieve various humanitarian crises. As a member of ACT, GWF prepares some programmes to tackle humanitarian issues, one strategic move to choose, because the objective of GWF is to leave significant impacts.

The significant impacts expected from cash waqf will go to two directions: the beneficiaries and society in general, as humanitarian stakeholder. The strategic goal of this programme is not to merely entrust some virtues for the beneficiaries, but to build comprehensive and sustainable awareness in society. To reach that end, education is conducted constantly, be it through waqf transparency and waqf optimization.
Cash waqf managed by GWF isn’t similar to the one managed by banks. GWF doesn’t objectify money as waqf. The waqf transaction is done with cash, but the cash will be used for actual programmes that last longer than money.

For instance, cash waqf for humanity is dedicated to education crisis relief, such as building school. Education waqf, in a collaboration with “100 Outer Islands Empowerment” programme by ACT, build schools in regions that lack the resources to do so.

There is also water waqf, intended for building wells or other irrigation infrastructure systems. GWF looks back to the past, when Utsman bin Affan bought one of two wells from one Jewish who exploited water in the midst of scarcity and charged people for that. In modern context, GWF will dedicate your cash waqf to build wells as productive resource, e.g. for irrigating rice fields. Beside wells (there are two categories based on the area: shallow wells with depth less than 10 metres, and deep wells which needs deeper drilling in order to stock water), GWF encourages wakif to devote their waqf for irrigation and dam. The water will help to ensure the continuity of agrarian sector in the time of crisis.

The programme also provides livestock waqf. This waqf wouldn’t be used to deliver food straight to people’s kitchens, but to build infrastructure that people can use to produce their livestock independently. GWF optimizes the waqf to afford crops/rice fields and establish Lumbung Pangan Masyarakat (LPM) programme. There is qurban waqf. With this programme, waqf wouldn’t be used to directly buy cattle, but to help running a farm so there will always be livestock for qurban. Thus, your cash will be used to afford and breed cattle. The outcome will be utilized at some point, but the main value (the cattle) will be saved. Once the broodstocks stop being productive, they will be replaced by the more productive ones so the value of the waqf sustains.

Therefore, GWF uses cash waqf as the core attempt to empower society in three sectors: education, water, and food sustainability. Those are strategic issues because the benefits outstretch to various ranges, are sustainable in multidimension. Surely, educating people, ensuring their jobs, and enhancing food sustainability, will protect people from poverty and apathy. As your support for waqf advances, this programme will leave significant impacts to solve crises in this nation and the world, Inshaa Allah.


Translator: Esa Khairina Husen