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Islamic Philanthropy Raises Record $46 Million for Refugees in 23 Countries

In 2023, Islamic philanthropy marked a significant milestone, raising a record $46 million to support nearly 2 million refugees and internally displaced people across 23 countries, as highlighted in a recent report by the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR).

This substantial increase in contributions, representing a 20 percent growth from the previous year, underscored the growing generosity within Islamic philanthropy and its impact on vulnerable communities globally.

Lebanon, Syria, and Yemen emerged as primary beneficiaries of these donations, which were primarily made through zakat and sadaqah, obligatory and voluntary donations in Islam. Notably, Lebanon, grappling with hosting the highest refugee population per capita globally, received substantial support to alleviate the strain on its resources.

Meanwhile, Syria’s protracted crisis, displacing over 12 million people, and Yemen’s enduring humanitarian crisis also received critical assistance, reflecting the dire need for humanitarian aid in conflict-affected regions.

Despite the significant increase in donations, the UNHCR revealed that the funding received in 2023 covered less than half of its worldwide budgetary needs. This shortfall underscored the ongoing challenges in meeting the immense humanitarian needs globally, emphasizing the continued importance of such donations in addressing humanitarian crises effectively.

Filippo Grandi, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, expressed gratitude for the generosity of Islamic philanthropy, particularly during moments of communal gathering and reflection like Ramadan. He extended solidarity to displaced individuals, acknowledging the hardships faced by Sudanese refugees and those displaced in conflict zones such as Yemen, Syria, Afghanistan, and Rohingya communities.

As Islamic philanthropy continues to play a crucial role in addressing humanitarian crises, Grandi urged continued support to alleviate the suffering of displaced populations worldwide. He emphasized the importance of compassion and solidarity in times of adversity, calling for sustained efforts to ensure the well-being and dignity of all affected individuals and communities.

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