Islamic Relief USA (IRUSA) is part of a global operation of the same name dedicated to humanitarian causes and relief in crises. The United States operation is one of 38 worldwide and is headquartered in Alexandria, Virginia. This year, IRUSA reached its 25-year milestone.

What Is The Mission And Vision Of Islamic Relief USA?

IRUSA strives to build up communities through the empowerment of individuals, especially the disadvantaged. The aim is to give a voice to the underserved, and the vision of IRUSA is a world without poverty. This is accomplished by giving relief and treating people with dignity without regard to gender, race, or religion.

This mission is inspired by the Qur’an and honors charity, one of the five pillars of Islam. There are five guiding principles within the mission of IRUSA.

  • Excellence: Maintain a standard of excellence in operations and conduct to tackle poverty.
  • Sincerity: Serve with a genuine desire to honor God and help humanity.
  • Social Justice: Lifting up the poor and vulnerable by the development of skills and resources to help people realize their God-given potential.
  • Compassion: Work with other organizations to respond to crises created by disasters, poverty, or injustice.
  • Custodianship: Maintain accountability and transparency with the resources entrusted for furthering goodwill.

Who Are the Leaders?

The of Islamic Relief USA executive team is comprised of nine heads. Five people sit on the board of directors. These talented and experienced leaders are responsible for overseeing the ambitious humanitarian projects that are underway throughout the year.

Islamic Relief USA Executive Team Members:

  • ​Sharif Aly, CEO
  • ​Anwar Khan, President
  • ​Anne Wilson, Director of Programs
  • ​Azhar Azeez, Director of Fund Development
  • ​Christina Tobias-Nahi, Director of Public Affairs
  • ​David Hawa, Director of Communications
  • ​Dawn Sikorski, Corporate Counsel
  • ​Tareq Osman, Controller

Board Of Directors:

  • ​Khalid Lamada, Chairman
  • ​Hamdy Radwan, Vice Chairman
  • ​Hamadi Bengabsia, Treasurer
  • ​Mohamed Amr Attawia, Member
  • ​Nancy A. Khalil, Member

Who Benefits From Islamic Relief USA?

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With a myriad of causes in need of assistance, it’s no wonder that this organization has 16 different programs in place to provide assistance.

  • Children: Provide children with preventative health care, nutrition, and education. Takes part in Universal Children’s Day on November 20th.
  • Refugees: Helps the displaced with food, water, winter supplies, medical treatment/supplies, winter care, education, and employment/integration services.
  • Day of Dignity: Annual September event for the needy with a distribution of food, clothes, blankets, and hygiene supplies along with medical screenings and haircuts.
  • Disaster response: Prepared to mobilize and respond with speed, efficiency, and cultural sensitivity. Provides aid for those affected by natural disasters.
  • Education: Improve economic conditions, prevent military service coercion, and promote equality by providing educational opportunities for impoverished communities.
  • Food aid: Provide nourishing meals to communities afflicted by malnutrition.
  • Health: Extend the life expectancy of the underserved with disease prevention services and supplies.
  • Livelihood: Promote sustainability in communities by offering job skill training.
  • Orphans: Provides children without guardians access to medical and mental health care. Access to education for both orphans and families of widowed mothers. Open possibilities for a future of self-reliance.
  • Sadaqah Jariyah: Charity that implements projects such as building clean water systems, building schools, entrepreneurship training for widows, establishing farms, starting or improving a medical clinic.
  • Water and sanitation: Secure water resources for people, crops, and livestock through infrastructure. Bring water up to quality standards through sanitation systems.
  • Winterization: Provide supplies needed to survive harsh winter conditions.
  • Women’s programs: Improve the lives of women and girls through access to better healthcare, education, and services for abuse victims.
  • Ramadan: Humanitarian efforts are boosted during this sacred holiday.
  • Udhiyah/Qurbani: Islamic tradition of sharing meat with the poor at the end of the Hajj season.
  • Zakat: A Muslim practice of giving 2.5 percent of one’s disposable income to a fund set up to help with select cases of the poor and needy.

Domestic Impact And Accolades

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In August 2005, Hurricane Katrina battered the southern coastal United States. Thousands died, millions of dollars of damages were left in her wake, and countless Americans were displaced. Islamic Relief USA deployed into the affected area and provided aid to the hurricane victims.

During this effort, 1.5 million pounds of food were distributed among the needy in New Orleans and Baton Rouge. Teams worked to get a medical clinic in Biloxi operational. Evacuees were housed in mosques in Baton Rouge. The temporary mosque shelter provided transportation assistance, access to showers, and storage for personal items.

To further the recovery effort, other needed aid was provided. Getting students back to school was made possible with tuition assistance, school supplies, and equipment. Homeowners were offered help rebuilding houses. Other household needs were given, including bedding, hygiene products, and kitchen items.

Providing Health Care To Katrina Victims

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A health care facility was needed to serve the East Biloxi area after one of the local clinics was badly damaged. IRUSA provided a double-wide trailer and medical equipment so they could provide treatment and care immediately without charge. About 7,500 people receive care from this clinic during Katrina recovery. The trailer is now located in Leakesville and is still being used to provide medical and dental care for students in the community. The clinic currently sees about 1,500 patients annually.

“Just knowing there are people like you to help us was amazing,” said one New Orleans resident. Also expressing gratitude was a Biloxi clinician: “Our recovery was dependent upon the benevolence of folks such as the Islamic Relief organization, and we just wouldn’t have been able to make it had it not been for you guys.” IRUSA has received numerous other accolades, even receiving letters of thanks from members of the US Congress.

Prestige Earned through Awards

 And Accreditation

It’s helpful to know when a charity has been vetted. Islamic Relief USA boasts credentials awarded by the following organizations.

  • ​Better Business Bureau
  • ​Charity Navigator
  • ​Combined Federal Campaign
  • ​Guidestar Exchange
  • ​International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent
  • ​GreatNonprofits
  • ​United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA)

Islamic Relief USA’s Memberships And Associations

You may be interested to know who is associated with this charity. The IRUSA is a member of the following organizations:

  • ​Alexandria Chamber of Commerce
  • ​Alliance to End Hunger
  • ​Data & Marketing Association
  • ​Religions for Peace
  • ​InsideNGO
  • ​InterAction
  • ​National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster
  • ​Society for International Development

In addition, IRUSA collaborates with other excellent organizations who are also working toward humanitarian causes.

  • ​American Red Cross
  • ​Capital Area Asset Builders
  • ​CARE International
  • ​Catholic Charities USA
  • ​Catholic Relief Services
  • ​Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints
  • ​HIAS (Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society)
  • ​International Red Cross
  • ​ONE
  • ​Salvation Army
  • ​Save the Children USA
  • ​United Nations
  • ​UNRWA (United Nations Relief and Works Agency)
  • ​United Nations World Food Program
  • ​U.S. Department of Agriculture
  • ​Women, Faith and Development Alliance
  • ​World Vision

Money Matters

According to Charity Watch, Islamic Relief USA is highly rated in excellence with accountability and transparency. They hold a four-star rating with an overall score of 91 percent. This rating is comprised of a financial score of 87.5 percent and an accountability/transparency score of 100 percent.

On average, funding sources are 97 percent from contributions, gifts, or grants. The remaining 3 percent is earned through fundraising.

Most of the budget is spent directly on programs, with 89 percent being spent on carrying out the mission. They spent 7 percent on raising money and almost 4 percent on administrative expenditures.

Islamic Relief USA's Financial Record

Tax-exempt organizations, nonexempt charitable trusts, and section 527 political organizations are required to file a Form 990 or 990EZ with the IRS.

Islamic Relief’s most recent IRS Form 990 or 990EZ available is for 2016. The following financial data was extracted from the organization’s most recent publicly available tax return for their fiscal year ending December 2016. This financial data can give you a clearer picture of how well they allocate their resources.

Percentage Of Donations Spent On Services

  • ​Total donations and grants: $104,682,885
  • ​Spent on services and grants: $109,195,833
  • ​Percentage of donations toward grants and services: 104.31 Percent

Percentage Of Revenue Spent On Fundraising

  • ​Total revenue: $103,045,989
  • ​Fundraising expenses: $8,869,154
  • ​Paid to professional fundraisers: $0.00
  • ​Percentage of total revenue spent on fundraising: 8.60 percent

Administrative And Overhead Costs

  • ​Overhead expenses: $4,347,119
  • ​Property assets: $4,011,624
  • ​Investment assets: $1,348,033
  • ​Paid to officers/directors: $1,108,144
  • ​Highest paid officer/director: CEO $171,649
  • ​Percentage of total revenue spent on officers/directors salaries: 1.07 Percent

How To Help

Islamic Relief USA has organized a comprehensive provision of services to worthy causes worldwide.

An organization such as this one is quite capable of making an enormous positive impact, and you can offer a hand to help IRUSA reduce suffering in the world.

Ways To Offer Hands-On Help

  1. 1
    Register as a volunteer.
  2. 2
    ​Check listings of volunteer opportunities.
  3. 3
    ​Check in for upcoming volunteer opportunities on the website calendar or Facebook page. There is also a group for volunteers on Facebook!

Ways To Support Financially

  1. 1
    Direct donation: Make a one time or a recurring donation.
  2. 2
    Amazon Smile: 0.5 percent of your purchase will go to IRUSA.
  3. 3
    Giving Assistant: Like Amazon Smile, you may donate your cash back rewards toward this charity.
  4. 4
    Crowdfunding: Start a fundraiser in honor of your birthday or a memorial to help raise money for this worthy cause.
  5. 5
    Vehicle Donation: Turn over your old car, motorcycle, boat, or jetski, which they will convert into money to help further the humanitarian efforts of this organization.
  6. 6
    Stock donations: Link IRUSA your securities to share dividends.
  7. 7
    Campaign: Curate sponsors through running a 5K, sharing impact testimonial stories on social media.

The Truth About Islamic Relief USA

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Islamic Relief is ready and driven to make the world a better place by not only meeting short-term needs but by also offering long-term provisions to elevate poverty-stricken and disaster-affected communities.

There are a variety of ways to help this cause, and with most of the income going directly toward programs, one’s contributions will surely help improve hopeless situations both here and abroad.

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