The concept of charity is deep rooted in Islam, giving charity is one of the five pillars of Islam it has obvious benefits. Charity is mentioned in the Qur’an many times; spending in the way of Allah, supporting orphans, feeding the poor, relatives and travellers. Taking care of humanity is a central part of Islam. Emphasising the importance of charity in Islam.
“The best charity is to satisfy a hungry person, said Prophet Muhammad (SAS). He also said "No wealth (of a servant of Allah) is decreased because of charity." (Al-Tirmidhi, Hadith No. 2247).
Charity and Sunnah
Prophet Muhammad (Peace be Upon him) has lived his life as an exemplary of giving.
He (Peace be Upon Him) taught us the necessity of giving charity without delay, how it saves us from hellfire and also how it acts as a purifier.
“Give charity without delay, for it stands in the way of calamity.” – Al-Tirmidhi
Charity in Islam takes many forms, Zakat, Sadaqah, Lillah, Fitrana, Qurbani, and Kaffarah to name some. The two most essential are Zakat (Obligatory charity) and Sadaqah (Voluntary charity).
Zakat is the third pillar of Islam and it is obligatory on all Muslims whose wealth is above the Nisab threshold ( see Zakat calculator - https://www.sktwelfare.org/zakat). It is a payment of 2.5 % of ones total cumulative wealth for a year and it has to be distributed to one of the eight eligible group of people. (See Zakat FAQ’s - https://www.sktwelfare.org/zakat-faqs)
It is mentioned in the Quran that, fulfilling Zakat strengthens our faith and is a mean of self-purification, soul and wealth.
Sadaqah relates to any form of giving, which can be money, food, clothing, or even a smile. It can be any form of acts of kindness to other humans or animals too. Sadaqah expiates our sins and makes our faith stronger, every act of ours is counted as an act of worship when we give for the sake of Allah (SWT). Prophet Muhammad (Peace be Upon Him) mentioned that,
“The believer’s shade on the day of resurrection will be his charity” – Al-Tirmidhi