Community Participation in Waqf Revitalization

Community Participation in Waqf Revitalization


Community Participation in Waqf Revitalization is a project coordinated by the Kapitan Kling Mosque Qariah Committee, the Penang Heritage Trust (PHT), with various other partners. It is supported by UNESCO Programme on Integrated Community Development & Cultural Heritage Site Preservation in Asia and the Pacific through Local Effort (LEAP).

The main geographical focus of this project is the Kapitan Kling Mosque neighbourhood and surrounding waqf properties, while other waqfs in the inner city of George Town, Penang, are also included.

Main objectives

a) To promote an appreciation of the Muslim heritage in George Town, in particular the historical legacy of waqf.

b) To promote a common understanding of the functions of waqf — according to the intentions of the benefactor, for maintenance of the trust properties, for charity, public good (amal jariah) and welfare for the local community.

c) To identify the needs and aspirations of the local Muslim community (occupants of both waqf and non-waqf properties), particularly their anticipated housing needs with the Repeal of Rent Control.

d) To promote the concept of sustainable development, ‘healthy cities’ and ‘cities for life’, in particular, sustainable livelihood, community and urban environment, and to identify ways in which various parties can participate in the revitalization of waqf, which would take into account the community’s economic, social, cultural and spiritual development, as well as considerations of social justice and equity.

e) To develop a common vision which can be supported by all stakeholders – qariah, general community, religious authority, owners of adjacent properties, business, local authority and other government bodies, etc., taking into account the views of special groups such as women, youth, elderly and people with disabilities and special needs.

Preparatory and ongoing activities

1. Socio-Economic Survey, compiling and integrating information from previous surveys on waqf properties and using a questionnaire to gather new socio-economic information about the community that lives and works in and around the waqf areas.

2. Muslim Heritage Tours, familiarising people with the historical features of the local area. The first tour was conducted by the PHT on 7 February 1999, attracting over 20 people.

3. Physical Mapping of waqf properties, building condition and building use, as information that will be shared with the community.

4. Formal and informal briefings to various organisations and committees which are looking at waqf revitalization, including the Majlis Agama, USM Centre for Policy Research, Malay Chamber of Commerce, Pemenang, Muslim League and other interested groups.