Figures from NZF say applications for emergency help are coming from families, refugees, single parents and others struggling to pay for basics.
And the charity says their figures suggest that the 50% of UK Muslims already living in poverty are being hit even harder by the growing cost of living crisis.
Muslims were one of the worst affected groups in the UK by the coronavirus pandemic, with Muslims Census reporting a poverty rate 10 times higher than the national average.
Sohail Yanif, Chief Executive of the organization, said: “We are seeing higher levels of demand than at any time in our history. With Ramadan only a few weeks away, we’re relying on the Muslim community to give their Zakat in the UK so we can meet this demand.”
The Institute for Fiscal Studies said the likely impact of the Ukraine crisis on inflation and public finances may force the chancellor to act when he delivers his spring statement later this month.
Without more spending to reflect the worsening cost of living outlook, public sector workers face steep real terms pay cuts and energy bill payers will be hundreds of pounds worse off, the IFS said.
NZF said single mother, Fatima, couldn’t afford to pay many of her bills and struggled sourcing a job which would cover her basic living costs which meant she applied for support through the hardship and work fund.
“I was struggling to pay my bills, like council tax, water and a universal credit loan, and that’s before things I really needed like clothes for my baby,” Fatima said.
Zakat helped Fatima cover basic living costs, as well as funding a one year education course to help her get a better job and support herself and her family in the future.
The hardship fund also provided support for Mahmood after he fled Syria for a safer life in the UK. His current finances meant he was under increasing pressure each month as he struggled to find work.
Having received £750 hardship grant, Mahmood was able to pay his bills and focus on providing him and his family a stable life here in the UK and giving time to find work.
“Knowing there’s a community of Muslims here in the UK who support people like me in our time of need makes the uncertainty a bit easier to deal with” said Mahmood.
For Rashida, Zakat allowed her to start up a career within the NHS. She was homeless having come over from Nigeria but was determined to set up a new life in the UK and give back to the community.
“I volunteered at as many different places as I could, and even did some courses to help better my chances of getting a job, including a course in English as a second language (ESOL).”
When she found her dream job working for the NHS, she was ecstatic, however, couldn’t afford the training fee of £285.
Thankfully, Zakat donations were the reason she was able to pursue her career to help support her future in the UK, as well as help others.
“Your Zakat helped cover the cost of the course, but it’s done so much more than that,” she said.