Reaching out: A young volunteer with Charity Right distributing food to the poor and homeless at Masjid Jamek in Kuala Lumpur.
PETALING JAYA: Ramadan has always been the month of giving but for non-governmental organisation Mercy Mission, the good deed continues throughout the year.
Through its Charity Right campaign, Mercy Mission (not to be mistaken for Mercy Malaysia or Mercy Corps) aims to feed the poor, the homeless and the destitute regardless of their race, religion and nationality.
Mercy Mission national manager Sajid Hussain said before Charity Right started in 2012, they were told that nobody in Malaysia went to bed hungry.
The programme went ahead with 50 meals distributed weekly.
The figure has since snowballed to 115,000 meals a month, feeding poor people in need of food, including the homeless, refugees, the poor and orphans.
“If your neighbour is hungry, it is your responsibility to feed your neighbour, not the Government’s.
“The hadith is clear, Prophet Muhammad said your neighbour has a huge right over you. So you’ll be sinful if you sleep at night while your neighbour goes to bed hungry,” Sajid said in an interview.
He said most Muslims only concentrated on giving in Ramadan and not other months.
“Charity Right wants to break that mentality. Our programme is constant and it does not stop after a month,” he said, adding that hunger was an issue that affected humanity worldwide.
He recalled meeting a Somalian refugee in Gombak who only wished for milk for her child.
“The child suffered from bone deficiency due to lack of calcium. It is something we often take for granted, like milk,” Sajid said.
Charity Right is currently on a mission to feed five million people across the world, a target they hope to reach before the next Ramadan.
The programme has served 1.4 million people within the first half of the year.
“Ideally, I would like to say that we get one big donor who would give us a million ringgit and tell us to go feed five million people by the end of Ramadan but the reality isn’t as such.
“It is possible (to reach our target) but we need more funding,” Sajid said.
Visit www.charityright.com for details.