“There should be neither harming nor reciprocating harm,”
– saying of Prophet Muhammad (Hadith, Ibn Majah)

Islamic Relief is committed to the principle of ‘do no harm.’ We assist people according to need, do not discriminate in any way and do not expect anything in return.

We recognise that much of our work takes place in complex, fragile or conflict-affected environments and that external interventions, such as the provision of humanitarian aid or development assistance, can interact with the local context in ways that are sometimes unforeseen.

This document sets out Islamic Relief’s commitment to understand and minimise any negative effects of its operations.

Islamic Relief is committed to ensuring that its work does not cause harm to:

  • The people we seek to support and their families and wider communities, in particular in relation to their safety, dignity and rights
  • The functioning of communities, relationships between social groups and state-society relations
  • The environment
  • Local markets and sustainable livelihoods

Wherever possible, Islamic Relief will try to ensure that our programmes target root causes of insecurity, risk and inequality. We will also strive to support and develop local or national services and governance structures, and minimise displacement or substitution of services to avoid undermining the social contract between duty bearers and rights holders.

To ensure that our assistance remains beneficial to communities, Islamic Relief is committed to adopting a context-sensitive approach to its work.

Islamic Relief also abides by the international humanitarian principles of:

  • Humanity: Every individual’s right to live with dignity. Also the duty of others to try to save lives and alleviate suffering.
  • Impartiality: To act when there is need, without discrimination.
  • Neutrality: To act without preference for one group or another in conflict.
  • Independence: To ensure that humanitarian work is autonomous, separate from any other political, economic or military interests.

Read more about our commitment to ‘do no harm’ here.