Sadness of the Orphanage Children Facing School Exams and Ramadan

Dozens of children took shelter at Akhiruz Zaman Orphanage, Bekasi. They had an underprivileged economy and needed a variety of assistance, from food to education.

Dea, one of the foster children at the Akhiruz Zaman Orphanage, receives an educational scholarship from Global Zakat. (ACTNews)

ACTNews BEKASI – Cahya Adelia (16) stepped calmly into the living room measuring approximately 3x4 meters at Akhiruz Zaman Orphanage, Rawalumbu, Bekasi City after Global Zakat Bekasi team arrived at  the orphanage on Tuesday (4/1/2021). The girl who is familiarly called Dea is one of the orphans who live in the orphanage. Dea had been a foster child for almost three years together with 50 other children. She spent her time with various activities in the place that had become her house.

When Global Zakat met her, she had just finished serving buyers at the small shop owned by the orphanage. Selling activities were one of the various activities provided by the orphanage. Dea said, through the shop they could get additional income that could be used to meet daily needs. Indeed  they also relied on donors.

Global Zakat came to Akhiruz Zaman orphanage to distribute food alms as well as education assistance. Dea said that the assistance was very useful, especially in supporting tuition fees.

Dea’s happiness over this assistance was not without reason. Previously, she was unable to take the exam because she was unable to pay the tuition. This was not the first time Dea had felt it, but it has been several times. “ If I can’t pay the tuition, I have to take a follow-up exam. It’s sad that I can’t do the test with my friends,” she said.

Lia, one of the administrators of Akhiruz Zaman Orphanage agreed with the problem of the children’s education. Dea’s problem was often felt by other foster children who were already in school. Apart from underprivileged families' backgrounds of foster children, another condition was the foundation’s finance which only relied on donations from donors.

“In total there are 20 administrators including kindergarten teachers and ustaz and ustazah. We are here to fend for ourselves. For that, we look forward to foster parents and additional donors to help with children’s daily needs, especially education,” explained Lia.

Akhiruz Zaman Orphanage cared for 50 orphans and underprivileged children who live in dormitory. They usually do worship activities, language learning, cleaning, and go to school for those who are already in school. In addition, the orphanage also cared for 41 other children who live in the vicinity, they received financial support for school and daily meals.

Ramadan at the Orphanage

Lia said, like community in general, this year would be the second year her foster children undergo Ramadan in the midst of a pandemic. This condition was considered quite severe. The reason was, it was still clear in Lia’s memory how the difficulties the orphanage experienced last Ramadan amid pandemic, especially in fulfilling food needs.

“Two weeks before Ramadan there were few donors, so we were a bit overwhelmed in preparing food in early Ramadan. Even we did not have any basic necessities at all. Many donors would send assistance in approaching Eid-al-Fitr. In facts, the needs were very urgent in early Ramadan,” said Lia.

In early April, Akhiruz Zaman Orphanage received food assistance from ACT Bekasi. This assistance was also welcomed by the orphanage. Foster children looked happy because almost in the past year, there were rarely any events that had been held to entertain them.

Ihsan Hafizan from ACT Bekasi team hoped that food packages and Waqf Drinking Water could provide benefit for foster children in welcoming Ramadan. This assistance was insufficient, because the needs of children, both food and education were still very high.

“We invite benefactors to contribute helping underprivileged orphans in Bekasi through Indonesia Dermawan website.[]