I cannot adequately express my gratitude to ummah for their support during this awful pandemic. Usually, as Ramadan approaches, we would face an empty treasury, but your generosity has allowed us to continue helping people in these stressful times. Unfortunately, this year Ramadan (starting on April 13) will follow hard on the heels of the lifting of the moratoria that have postponed a crisis such as we have never faced before. Landlords who have been forced to wait for their rent payments are not well-placed to show the patience that their tenants will need. We intend to be ready to offer them partial payments to give their tenants (some of whom have never had to ask for sadaqa or zakat before) time to go back to work and get their renewed paychecks.
Although the moratoria have spared us from a flood of applications that would wipe out our treasury, we have already seen our average grant increase from $448 in January 2020 to $1,012 so far in 2021. This trend will continue until we break the back of the economic aftermath of the pandemic. An article in The Washington Post (“Maryland’s Oncoming Crisis of Evictions”, 2/1/21) reported that despite the moratorium there were 2,500 evictions in Maryland in November and “there are clear signs things will get much worse.” Court rulings permitting evictions to proceed are on hold for now but “they would take effect when the emergency orders are lifted … [in] March.” That means now!
Among the applicants currently in need of your help are
- unemployed man seeking $500 for rent and $300 for utilities who lost his home due to Covid,
- an unemployed disabled woman seeking $1190 to pay her water bill accumulated since Covid
- prevented her family from covering the difference between her SSI and her expenses,
- a woman separated from her seeking $850 rental assistance after being “in a bad car accident” requiring back surgery” now on unpaid medical leave,
- a couple with of two young boys seeking $3,600 towards rent after Covid badly hurt their child-care business,
- a couple seeking $5,100 in rental assistance after the husband lost his job due to Covid,
- the parents of two boys seeking $3600 towards $8700 in rent after Covid badly hurt their childcare business,
- an unemployed single woman seeking $4000 for back rent after her roommate abruptly left without paying her share of the rent.
We recently received the following expressions of appreciation from beneficiaries demonstrating the blessings that our recent donors have been to the ummah:
“Shukrun … for your rescue.” (name withheld)
“Your dedication … is a true example of the story of the good Samaritan, when we are asked to reflect on the meaning of brotherhood. I can’t thank you enough for your help and thoughtfulness at this difficult time of my life.” (name withheld)
“Thank you for all that the foundation does.” (name withheld)
“I am truly appreciating your assistance during the time of COVID19 pandemic epidemic crisis. For wonderful staff all hand on deck. You did not waste any time. … From the bottom of my heart, I hope that we will work together in the near future. After pandemic is no longer a threat…. But never forgetting people who help me along [the] way.” — (name withheld)
“I always remember your assistance in my adversity. May Allah sw reward you all for your help to the Muslim community.” (name withheld)
“I am writing this letter to express my deep thanks to the Islamic-American Zakat Foundation … for helping me pay the past due electricity bill…. I am very grateful and always will be.”– (name withheld)
Please make your most generous donation or donate at our website www.iazf.org. Help us through the big crunch that is rapidly approaching.
Jazaakum Allah al-khair!
Imad-ad-Dean Ahmad, Ph.D.
P.S.: We are registered with the Commonwealth of Virginia Dept. of Agriculture and Consumer Affairs as a charitable organization, and our financial statement is available upon written request from the State Division of Consumer Affairs.