Al-Khair Foundation (AKF) began with a school. In the Islamic tradition, which advocates that charity starts at home, we wanted to give back to our UK community first. And education was the best thing we knew to give.
Today, Al-Khair Foundation (AKF) is a UK-based Muslim charity, and although we’ve been engaged in charitable work from the outset, education was initially our key priority. After our UK schools proved to be a success, AKF started building schools overseas. Our focus was educating orphans and children from underprivileged communities. This led to our work with widows and vulnerable women, and then to the establishment of the AKF shelters. Eventually we launched our water aid and livelihood projects, as well as the Al-Khair Foundation medical aid programmes. 2005 became a turning point for us, when AKF rose to the challenge of providing emergency aid during the Kashmir Earthquake of that year. This was our first venture into the area of Overseas Disaster Relief. That October, and in the winter months which followed, AKF distributed food, shelter kits and medicine to survivors of the quake. Since then, AKF has undertaken emergency aid missions all over the world. Our support of the Haiti earthquake survivors was recognised by the United Nations in 2010. While during the Japan earthquake of 2011, we were the only UK Muslim charity working with survivors on the ground.
The Prophet (saw) said, “Do not wish to be like anyone except in two cases. (The first is) A person, whom Allah has given wealth and he spends it righteously; (the second is) the one whom Allah has given wisdom and he acts according to it and teaches it to others.??? (Sahih Bukharic – Narrated ‘Abdullah bin Mas’ud)
At Al-Khair Foundation (AKF), we believe in balance without compromise. We believe in accountability and mindful giving. We believe that charity and education go hand in hand. And here’s how this translates in our work:
AKF believes that all human life is equal. Every community has a right to benefit from the world’s natural resources. Every person has the right to lead a self-sufficient, dignified life. Where people have been affected or uprooted by disasters and conflict, we provide relief to help them through the crisis. But AKF also believes in helping people help themselves. That’s why we run sustainable development programmes, which range from livelihood projects to long-term water aid solutions.
AKF doesn’t believe that providing a basic education is enough. This is why Al-Khair Schools regularly engage students and the wider populace in community based outreach work. Our focus is on encouraging people to be conscious of the needs of wider community, and acting locally to make a positive difference.
AKF doesn’t believe in telling tall-tails or make big claims. We know our limits, but we also know that united, there’s nothing we cannot change. AKF works with over 30 partners nationally and globally, including UNHCR, Afghan Aid, Christian Aid, UMR and Islamic Help.
AKF is also part of the Coalition of Muslim NGOs.
AKF is a young charity with a fresh vision, and a desire to galvanise the Muslim charity circuit. We don’t just want to take your money. We want to take you on board, as we work to raise awareness of global issues that won’t get solved through donations alone. Watch this space for more on AKF Advocacy work.
Al-Khair Foundation (AKF) works locally and globally to alleviate the suffering of dispossessed people. Through generous donations, we’re able to make a difference and save lives. We provide:
From internal conflicts to natural disasters, Al-Khair Foundation prides itself in being one of the first on the ground to respond. In the event of an emergency, we dispatch our relief teams to assess the situation, provide vital support and deliver necessary aid. Once on the ground, we work to deliver the essentials (clean water, food, shelter and medication) to survivors and affected people. We responded to natural disasters and crises in Pakistan, India, Afghanistan, Palestine, Nepal and the United Kingdom, as well as providing considerable support for refugees fleeing conflict in Syria, Burma and Yemen. AKF also has on-going relief projects in parts of the world where war and regular disasters have left the population without social stability and security.
It’s easy to forget how vital water is to our lives. It’s also easy to forget that in some parts of the world, having access to tap water is a luxury. Al-Khair Foundation provides clean, running water to disadvantaged communities worldwide. We look for the most effective way to source water in any given location, and then we work to get the water to those in need. Whether this means building boreholes and installing hand-pumps, or even setting up water filtration plants that work on solar energy, we strive to provide the gift of water to the communities who need it the most.
Al-Khair Foundation’s Health projects range from disability support to health and maternity care through our mobile medical units. We also provide medical care, hygiene and sanitation kits in the aftermath of a disaster. Our Health programme is delivered in many regions around the world, including Gaza, Kenya, Pakistan and Bangladesh, India, Nepal. In areas where AKF lacks the expertise or practical means to deliver, we fund existing projects or work with organisations on the ground.
Al-Khair Foundation responds to the needs of refugees and Internally Displaced Peoples (IDPs) by providing shelter in tents and in building camps. AKF also works to rebuild homes and villages destroyed by disasters. These are long-term housing projects, which eventually offer a permanent solution to homelessness.
Al-Khair Foundation has been committed to increasing literacy, especially amongst the most disadvantaged. We do so by building schools and providing vocational training in many locations around the world, including the UK, Somaliland, Pakistan, Gaza and Bangladesh. We have eight schools in our portfolio – three in the United Kingdom, one in Somaliland and four in Pakistan – from which we educate over 6,000 children. We provide over 3,000 Palestinian children in Gaza with education, and this work has been supported by the UNRWA.
Our livelihood programmes provide people with the training and the means to earn a decent living. Not only this, but we also give them the opportunity of employment. With your help, we can ensure more people are able to work themselves out of poverty and reduce their dependence on hand outs.
Our Vulnerable People programme provides aid to the vulnerable who face hunger, poverty, and lack community support. From providing the homeless of Britain with warm food and winter garments, to delivering food aid to the starving people of Madaya, we at Al-Khair Foundation are committed to aiding vulnerable communities. We also run global sponsorship programs for orphans, widows and orphanages, as well as providing temporary shelter, and secure permanent accommodation for vulnerable women and children. Al-Khair Foundation is also keen to support local community organisations that are making a difference in UK and overseas through partnerships and financial support.
AKF runs several major seasonal programs across 8 countries annually. During the holy month of Ramadan we provide food and iftar meals to dispossessed people. During Eid ul-Adha, we distribute Qurbani (sacrificial) meat to poor families. We also provide Eid gift packs and Zakat al-Fitr (Fitrana) to the needy, as well as a range of other religious donations including Zakat, Fidya, Kafara and Sadaqah. We also cater to the seasonal and religious needs of communities around the world.
We believe in the importance of helping those in need at home as well as abroad. We work with society’s most vulnerable to provide support, awareness and – above all – the opportunity to live a full and independent life. We offer the following projects within the UK: Employability and Skills support, Domestic violence support and Healthcare Support.
Imam Qasim Rashid Ahmad is the founder Al-Khair Foundation (AKF). A graduate in Islamic sciences, he has been actively involved in AKF’s work both at home and overseas.
For many years, Imam Qasim led AKF’s fundraising efforts by utilising his expansive reach and influence in the UK Muslim community. He has also played a large role in establishing and overseeing many of the charity’s aid and development programmes to date.
Prior to AKF, Imam Qasim served as counsellor, community/faith leader and imam at the Croydon Mosque and Islamic Centre. He also worked as visiting imam at Her Majesty’s Prison, for nine years. Here he counselled, taught and offered general welfare support to reforming prisoners.
Imam Qasim is also the CEO of IQRA TV, which has come to be known as one of the UKs premier Muslim television broadcasters.