Qurbani (AKA Udhiya) in Gaza
At the end of June 2023, Anera made qurbani distributions (otherwise widely known as udhiya in the Middle East) in Gaza, thanks to generous grants from two long-time funders. We reached 16,345 families in every Gaza governorate. Most families received two kilograms of meat, but 900 of the larger families in Gaza received four kilograms.
Anera worked with trusted community-based organizations to identify families living in extreme poverty or who lost their jobs during the COVID-19 pandemic. We prioritized women-headed households, unemployed heads-of-households, internally displaced persons, orphans, persons with disabilities, and the elderly. The project also bolstered the economy by purchasing the meat from the local livestock market, which has experienced great losses due to low demand and increased prices as a result of poverty and inflation.
What is qurbani?
The qurbani, or sacrifice, takes part on the 10th day of the Islamic calendar. It is marked on the holy day of Eid Al Adha (or Feast of Sacrifice). Qurbani is associated with Hajj (pilgrimage to Mecca), one of the five essential pillars of Islam, and it commemorates Ibrahim’s readiness to sacrifice his son.
This special day involves the sacrifice of an animal. Part of the meat is shared among relatives, friends and the needy. This encourages people to think of those less fortunate and promotes a spirit of giving and sharing within the community. Qurbani is obligatory for those who can afford it and is performed after the eid prayer which takes place on the morning of that day.
Qurbani brings Muslims from around the globe together for a shared worship and communal meals. It blends the powers of those who can afford these meals and those who can’t. So everyone can take part in the festive time of the Eid al-Adha.
The Importance of qurbani in Gaza
Gaza has one the world’s highest rates of unemployment and poverty. The situation has been exacerbated by on-going conflict, blockade, restrictions on movement of people and goods. Many families in Gaza struggle simply to afford basic necessities, including regular meals, throughout the year. During times of extreme hardship, Qurbani holds significant value and ensures that everyone can take part in the festive time.
Anera was honored to share in this time of communal solidarity, spirit of faith and love in Gaza.
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