We closed our journey with a visit to the refugees in Gaziantep. Here we found people living in extreme poverty. We provided them with food packs that would last them a month. The food packs consisted of rice, cracked wheat, lentils, beans, chocolate spread, tomato paste, vegetable oil, and salt. We also gave cash handouts to families whose conditions were worse than others.
Al Ihsan Foundation Indonesia (Yayasan Amal Al Ihsan Indonesia) purchased a TV and a DVD which will be used for Islamic educational programs to help educate the children in an orphanage about their religion, hoping to bring about a generation of youth with sound Islamic knowledge.
This orphanage houses approximately 114 children who are either orphans or placed there by parents who cannot afford to care for them. The orphanage (located in the village of Kami Jaya in Cikampek/Karawang), is managing well but needed support in delivering Islamic knowledge, so Al-Ihsan provided them with equipment that will InshaAllah help them teach and learn about Islam.
We then went and visited a widow with three children. Two of her children show symptoms of autism. She runs a small shop and produces about $150 a month. However, a lot of it is spent on medication for her children. Very little is left for her and her children to live on. As a sign of our support, we purchased items from her shop and distributed them amongst the community. We also gave her some funds that will help her situation In’Sha’Allah.
May Allah bless all our supporters and May he ease the burdens of all those suffering.
We visited an 80-year-old woman who lives alone. She has no one with her and no one to support her. The conditions in which she lives in is also very poor and unsafe. She is so poor she cannot afford electricity, so her neighbour has helped her out with electricity by connecting a cable from his house into hers. The well which is located on her land has no pump, so she is compelled to manually pull water from it. We intend on installing a pump for her that will In’sha’Allah make things a little easier for her and we have provided her with funds to help ease her situation.
We travelled to a village called Jajajand in Bandung/Indonesia. There we also visited families in poor and depleted situations.
The first house we visited was occupied by a 50-year-old widow who had recently suffered a stroke. She lived in a house which can only be described as an old shed. Very much like the other places we saw, her house was in very bad condition and shouldn’t be lived in, with flooring made out of bamboo sticks. She has 9 children living with her, some very young. She has no income and receives no benefits.
Our return visit to Indonesia was made because we felt that the need for aid was needed more in Indonesia than Malaysia. Our second visit mainly consisted of visiting poor families and individuals.
The areas we visited were Kadunghalang in Bogor and Jajajand in Bandung. In Kadunghalang we assisted some very poor families who were living in extremely bad conditions.
Amongst the homes that we visited was one owned by an elderly couple. The man is 95 years of age and his wife is 74. The condition in which they are living is atrocious.
The next house we visited was a family of three located not far from the elderly couple. The family consisted of a middle age couple and a young child. The house which they reside in is also unstable and in very bad condition. The husband collects sand from a nearby stream and sells it. This stream is very polluted but is their primary source of water. They use it for everything. They cook with it, wash in it, wash their clothes in it etc.
The husband makes about $200 a month by selling sand.
We visited an all-girls orphanage in Kuantan a district in Pahang and interviewed some orphans and the caretaker. The Orphanage has a combination of orphans and children from poor families who cannot look after them.
The orphanage itself was in acceptable condition. They do require immediate assistance with school stationery and other school expenses with some outgoing expenses. The orphanage receives support from the community and donations are generous. However, the orphanage would like to establish some way where it can support itself and where its continuation doesn’t rely on donors.
AL-Ihsan foundation intends on helping them become self-sustainable.
The next orphanage we visited was located in Rompin in the state of Pahang. This orphanage houses 24 children (15 boys and 9 girls). The children consist of both orphans and non-orphans from very poor families who cannot afford to feed them. The poverty level is very high in this area that even direct family members such as uncles and aunts are also unable to look after these children.
The founder of the orphanage previously worked for a Zakat organization. He left his job to open up the orphanage because while he was working with the organization,
In Malaysia, the first place we visited was an orphanage in Kajang in the state of Selangor. This orphanage housed a total of 54 Orphans, 29. Some of the orphan children are as young as 2 years old.
The orphanage itself needs some attention such as proper flooring (vinyl floor). Space is also an issue at the orphanage for they have little or no room to stack beds. Therefore, beds (or mattresses) have become portable where they are packed up every morning after rising and unpacked every night at bedtime.