Rice Alms: A Solution to High Rice Prices for the Dhuafa, Orphans, and the Elderly

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Indonesia set another record at the beginning of 2024. But unfortunately, this record is not an achievement to be proud of. In February 2024, Indonesia recorded the highest increase in rice prices in the history of the republic. The Central Bureau of Statistics (BPS) noted that the national rice price jumped by 24.65 percent year on year (yoy), with the average retail rice price reaching IDR 15,157/kg. This is certainly burdensome for the poor, orphaned and orphaned families, and the elderly. This is the time to give rice alms to those in need.

High Rice Prices Make Life Difficult for the Poor

The daily life lived by the poor or underprivileged is certainly not easy. To be able to fulfill their basic food needs, they have to work hard and rack their brains. They can’t easily collect rupiah for rupiah. Even when they do, they are only able to buy enough food, something they need, not want. The high price of rice this year has further burdened the poor, including orphans and the elderly.

The high price of rice in Indonesia is feared to cause high inflation in 2024. This concern was raised by the Indonesian Minister of Finance, Sri Mulyani, and the Director of the Institute for Demographic and Poverty Studies (Ideas), Yusuf Wibisono. According to them, issues related to rice prices must be taken seriously, as this will contribute to a spike in inflation. If a spike in inflation occurs, it will lead to a widening social gap in the country.

Inflation reduces people’s ability to fulfill their needs. In fact, it can make people who were previously in the middle to lower social status, become poor. As a result, the poverty rate in Indonesia is getting higher.

Read also: 4 Practices After the Fajr Prayer That You Don’t Want to Miss

Rice Alms Can Be the Answer

Basic foodstuffs should be accessible to all levels of society, including those who are below the poverty line. In this case, the community certainly has high expectations of the government as the owner of the authority that is expected to facilitate the basic needs of the community fairly and equitably. But unfortunately, this has not been realized properly.

As a result, the poor and underprivileged have difficulty obtaining basic food needs in the form of rice. As a staple food for Indonesians, rice is the most important food commodity that people buy to survive. Many poor families are unable to fulfill their daily nutritional needs, especially in the midst of soaring rice prices. Their inability to do so will have an impact on the growth and development of the children in their family. In the long run, this will also have an impact on Indonesia’s unqualified demographic bonus.

This is the right time for us fellow humans to help those in need. Through the Rice Alms Program, Dompet Dhuafa seeks to help those in need to be able to meet their basic needs in the form of rice. Rice Alms for the elderly, orphans, and dhuafa is one of Dompet Dhuafa’s efforts to help underprivileged people so that they can eat, fulfill their daily nutritional needs, and get a source of strength to carry out various activities such as worship, school, and also earn a living.

Read also: The Secrets of Charity According to Imam Al Ghazali

Markidah (62) from Kampung Cibau, Beberan Village, Ciruas District received TZF rice from Dompet Dhuafa through Gapoktan Bina Mulya Partners.

The virtue of rice almsgiving

It should be noted that rice alms is different from zakat fitrah, which must be paid during the month of Ramadan. Zakat-ul-Fitr is bound by certain conditions, such as being wealthy or capable and being paid during Ramadan. Rice charity, on the other hand, is not bound by such conditions. Rice almsgiving has the same virtues as almsgiving in general. Among the virtues of almsgiving is that its rewards and wealth will be multiplied and its sins will be expiated. Further virtues of almsgiving can be found in the articles 5 Virtues of Almsgiving According to the Quran and Hadith and Here are 7 Virtues of Almsgiving in Ramadan Based on Hadith.

In the world, a Muslim is obliged to help others who are in trouble. Whether it is helping materially or non-materially such as through the knowledge or energy he has. This is all included in charitable behavior, which is helping others to meet their needs. Giving alms to others is highly prioritized in Islam, even the reward is spaciousness in the hereafter. As stated in the following hadith of the Prophet:

“Abu Hurayrah (may Allah be pleased with him) reported that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: ‘Whoever relieves a believer of one worldly hardship, Allah will relieve him of one hardship on the Day of Resurrection’.” (HR Muslim, At-Tirmidhi)

Good friends, let’s donate a little of our wealth to those in need through Rice Alms for the Elderly, Orphans, and Dhuafa at Dompet Dhuafa. May we get rewards in every grain of rice that we donate.