The religion of Islam honors the tradition of caring for and adopting orphan children. Adoption is often mentioned in the Quran. “And they (the righteous) give food in spite of love for it to the needy, the orphan, and the captive…” (Quran 76: 8). The importance of caring for orphans is also prominent in the prophetic teachings, as the Prophet Muhammad himself was raised by his grandfather and his paternal uncle after he was orphaned as a young child. Later, he became an adoptive father himself. Hadith and the Sunnah reflect this. In his later years, the Prophet (SAW) said “whoever takes care of an orphan will be side by side with me in Paradise.” This hadith and many like it have resulted in a long history of Muslims striving to care for children in need through fostering, adoption, and/or financial support.
There are numerous spiritual blessings to helping orphans. The residual benefit of sadaqah occurs in the care and adoption of orphans, long after you have stopped sponsoring your orphan, you will continue to gain reward for your compassion. Every time they develop, grow and are able to contribute to their communities, you will be rewarded. Another benefit is having the best house, the Prophet (SAW) said, “The best house among the Muslims is the house in which orphans are well-treated. The worst house among the Muslims is the house in which orphans are ill-treated” (Bukhari). Finally, when a Muslim saves another’s life “it is as if they have saved all the lives of mankind” (5:32).
A test of the privileged is how we will help those less fortunate. According to the United Nations Children’s Fund, a child becomes an orphan every 18 seconds. That’s 8,400 children per day. We live in a time that has advanced enough to be able to help orphans in many ways other than just adoption. We are now able to donate to different organizations that support orphans both nationally and internationally. We are also able to directly sponsor orphans and/or families that are unable to support their children independently. Below is a charity that has high transparency ratings and is excellent an way to add blessing into you and your family’s lives and the life of an Orphan.
Islamic Relief is a Muslim-conscious charity that invests in children’s long-term futures, supporting their families, careers, and local communities to provide long-lasting safe sustainable solutions to poverty and inequality. They have four main areas that you may contribute to the sponsorship of an Orphan, sponsoring a family, providing medical care to orphans, and/or contributing to a scholarship fund for orphan children. Through these avenues, they are creating building the next generation and empowering communities. Now you can too.
by Angela Islam
For more articles and reflections visit angelaislam.com.