Minggu, 05 Desember 2010


(A Macro Social Work and Community Development Perspectives)1
By Supardi2
      Diskursus mengenai peran Zakat dalam pengentasan kemiskinan telah menjadi tema dalam berbagai forum ilmiah di Indonesia terutama sejak munculnya UU No. 38/1999 tentang pengelolaan Zakat. Akan tetapi masih jarang sekali studi lapangan yang meneliti bagaimana Oraganisasi-organisasi zakat mengaplikasikan zakat dalam rangka pengentasan kemiskinan dan bagiamana pandangan para mustahiq mengenai program ini. Studi program evaluasi qualitatif ini meneliti bagaimana Pos Keadilan Peduli Umat (PKPU) Jawa Tengah, Indonesia mengaplikasi Zakat dalam pengentasan kemiskinan melalui program pemberdayaan ekonomi masyarakat, Community Economic Development (CED). Penelitian ini mengkaji CED secara interdisipliner dari perspektif Zakat, teori pekerjaan social macro (macro social work) dan CED dalam framework interdisciplinary Islamic Studies.
      Studi ini menemukan bahwa: Pertama, Program CED merupakan program pemberian modal usaha dan bimbingan dalam managemen, marketing ,dan produksi bagi sekelompok mustahik agar mereka memiliki kemampuan, ketrampilan, dan mentalitas wirausaha dan mendirikan usaha kecil yang bertujuan untuk merubah mustahik menjadi muzakki.
      Kedua, dari perpektif Zakat, program ini berdasarkan pada paradigma substansial atas pemahaman Zakat, dimana Zakat dipandang sebagai sebuah alat untuk mengentaskan kemiskinan. Ketiga, dari perspektif teori CED program ini mengikuti paradigma liberal yang memfokuskan perkembangan ekonomi dari para peserta program. Terakhir, dari perspektif social work, secara conceptual, program ini telah sesuai dengan langkah-langkah dalam metode pemechaan masalah dalam teori pekerjaan social (social work), tetapi di lapangan ditemukan bahwa program ini tidak di-manage dengan baik terutama pada kegiatan analysis sosial, need assessment, dan monitoring. Walhasil program pengentasan kemiskinan yang tidak di-manage dengan baik hanya akan melestarikan kemiskinan itu sendiri.
Key words: Zakat organization, poverty alleviation, community economic Development (CED).

      The present qualitative formative program evaluation study examines the application of Zakāt for poverty alleviation through the Community Economic Development (CED) program undertaken by Central Java PKPU. The research explores the nature of CED program undertaken by the PKPU in the light of Zakāt, macro social work and CED theoretical perspectives. This research combines religious and social science methodologies, particularly social work, as an interdisciplinary approach to Islamic studies.
      This study finds that, first, from a Zakāt theoretical perspective, the program is based on a substantial paradigm of Zakāt. It means that the PKPU implements Zakāt as a potential tool to alleviate poverty by using modern professional management methods, although it has not reached its ultimate goal. Second, from CED theoretical perspective, the PKPU's CED program has taken a liberal vision of CED which emphases the economic growth of the community. Third, conceptually, from the macro social work perspective, the program has been in accordance with rational social work problem solving methods. On the practical level, however, there are some elements that are not carefully managed, especially in social analysis, needs assessment, monitoring and evaluation. As a result, rather than reducing poverty, the CED program that is not managed using just procedures and empowering activities, traps participants in poverty and perpetuate the existing power structure.
I. Statement of Problem and Significance of the Study
      The contemporary Muslim world faces a number of socio-economic problems (and Indonesia is no exception). Phenomena like mass poverty, income inequality, fiscal deficits, and indebtedness have deformed its image (Yasin and Tahir, 2000, p.1). In the case of Indonesia, the income per capita is only US$780, below the poverty line established by the World Bank of US$800. Moreover, the former vice president stated that the income per capita has dropped dramatically to US$300 per year. The percentage of poor people in Indonesia is still high. Quoting Biro Pusat Statistik (BPS), Central Statistical Biro and Social Affairs department, Suharto mentions that, in 2002, the proportion of poor people was still 17.6%, comprising 35.7 million people and among this number 15,6% are in absolute poverty (Suharto,2005, p.2). The problem of poverty requires solution from all element and components of the society, including Muslim as the majority.
      Zakat3is the third pillar of Islam and deals with socio-economic issues, especially poverty. Zakāt is not the only system that is presented by Islam to deal with the issue of poverty; but it must be regarded as the central part of the Islamic system to eradicate poverty (Yafie, 1994, p.174). The potential of the Zakāt fund is significant if all Muslims are willing to pay Zakāt. For instance, if 21 million Muslims in Central Java, of whom 10 million are Muzakki, who want to pay Zakāt, Central Java will raise about Rp. 20 billion. If this is applied nationally, Indonesia will raise Rp. 94, 5 trillion rupiah (Do' a; 2004). In addition, to maximize the role of Zakāt in poverty alleviation the government issued Act No 38/1999 on Zakāt management. The law was created in response to the increasing demand for professional Zakāt management. This resulted in the establishment of Badan Amil Zakat (BAZ) and Lembaga Amil Zakat (LAZ), (governmental and non-governmental Zakāt organization).
      These Zakāt organizations have collection and distribution programs. Unfortunately, the activities within the programs are not applied to a specific Community Economic Development (CED) program, they are merely done on the basis of charity, not on the basis of empowerment and economic development. As a result, their efforts in poverty amelioration are very partial, clinical, and casework oriented. Consequently, Zakāt is distributed in a consumptive way, not in a productive way.
      The PKPU, which stands for Pos Keadilan Peduli Umat (Center for Justice and the Care of Society), is a national non-governmental organization (NGO) in Indonesia, established in September 10, 1999, that is concerned with community development and Zakāt organization. It produces a CED program through income generating activities in the form of some small and micro enterprises (SMEs). This program has a mandate to apply the concept of Zakāt to poverty alleviation. There is still a question of the extent to which this program has empowered the poor, changed their position from mustahiq to Muzakki and developed the community’s economy. Accordingly, this study poses the following questions: (a) What is the nature of the Zakāt-funded CED program undertaken by Central Java PKPU from the organizers' and the participants' perspectives? (b) How is the program seen from Zakāt, social work, and CED theoretical perspectives? (c) What is the extent of the role of Zakāt in poverty alleviation through CED programs?
II. Conceptual Framework
        A. Zakāt. This study is based on the idea that Zakat is a form of social security (al-d*oman al-ijtimā'i) (Qardawi, 2002, p.220; 2004, p.878), not merely charity, and that it has an objective to build socio-economic justice through distributive justice (Iqbal, 1997, Qodir, 1998; Monzer Kahf, 1999; Rahman, 1999; Mas’udi, 1991). Zakāt is a potential source for alleviating poverty (Qardawi, 2002, p.132). In other words, Zakāt can be used as a potential tool to empower the poor through productive rather than consumptive distributional activities (Harahap, 1999; Hafidhuddin, 2003, Fatoni, et. al, 1990). From this foundation, it is clear that the objective of Zakāt is not merely giving a certain amount of money as charity but its purpose is the realization of a minimum standard of living. The researcher explores how the Zakāt organizer applies the concept of Zakāt through the CED Program, especially in the Central Java PKPU branch.
        B. CED in this study refers to the definition by Shragge, who notes:
        CED is a strategy that has been developed primarily but not exclusively in response to the deterioration of local economies and the lack of hope for revitalization from the outside, either from the private market through investment or with the support of government programs….Through these processes, community organizations have now become players in the process of economic development. Practices have varied from the promotion of small-scale enterprise that employ people who face long term unemployment, to loan fund to support CED initiatives, to plan initiatives that promote local economic development. The underlying goals are to find ways to revitalize local economies ameliorate poverty through training and job creation, and to involve residents and other local actors in these processes (Shragge, 2003).
        Dealing with the kind of CED, Ife (2001) categorizes CED into two groups: conservative and radical CED: The former refers to the CED that develops its economic activities based on conventional parameters. This means that the more conservative approach to CED seeks to find new ways in which the community can more effectively participate in the mainstream economy by taking local initiatives. These can be done through attracting local industries, initiating local industries, and developing tourism. Meanwhile the letter refers to the CED which seeks to develop an alternative community based on economy. In other words, the above approach to community development seeks to improve the economy of the community by helping it to operate more effectively within the existing economic order. The radical CED is usually applied in cooperative, community bank, and credit union. 
      On the one hand, this study analyzes the organization’s program, and on the other hand, it analyzes the community as a participant in the program. As a result, this study will also be based on a macro level-social-work perspective. Macro level-social-work is the practice of helping people solve social problems and make social change in the community, at the organizational, societal, and global level (Brueggemann, 2000: 3, Netting, et. al., 1998). In short, social work is a formalized approach to the amelioration of social problems (Midgley, 1981).
III. Research Method
        This article is a qualitative exploratory study based on formative program evaluation and a phenomenological approach. The qualitative exploratory method is used because the purpose of the study is to explore the implementation of the CED program as a whole. Meanwhile the phenomenological approach is used to capture the experiences of people who participate in the program. Program evaluation is employed because the focus of this study is on the CED program undertaken by Central Java PKPU. The program evaluation in this study refers to formative4, constructivist5, and participant-focused evaluation.6
        The data is mainly collected through observation, secondary document analysis, and interviews. Central Java PKPU only allowed the researcher to do research on one group of the CED programs. The data and the subject were limited mainly to street vendor empowerment. The article is based on the result of interviews with 14 participants of the CED program.
IV. Findings and Analysis
        The Zakāt-funded CED program extends Zakāt funding, guidance, and training in management, marketing and production to a group of participants (the poor and the needy) in order to help them acquire entrepreneurship abilities, skills, and mentality; and to establish small or micro enterprises or to develop the existing Small or Micro enterprises (SMEs) that they already work in. The objective of this program is to change the Mustahik to Muzakki.
      The Central Java PKPU has undertaken several CED programs, such as (a) integrated animal husbandries in Nglimut village, Kendal, and Tugurejo, Semarang for 21 and 30 members respectively, (b) a fish husbandry in Kebumen for 4 members, (c) a chicken husbandry group in Semarang for 18 members and (d) a group of micro enterprises named Kelompok Swadaya Mustahiq (KSM), a empowered Zakat recipient group "Mandiri" for 14 members. In this section I profile this KSM.
      KSM Mandiri
      The reason, why the PKPU chose a street sweeper community was based on a survey. From the survey, PKPU found first, the number of poor people in Banyumanik village is 644 (286 families) from the total number of people 7. 625 (1.698 families), second, the street sweepers surveyed are from a low economic strata of society with an income of below the regional minimum income of Semarang (equal to the price of 360 kilograms of rice or less than 475.000 a month). In other words, they live in 'extreme poverty' (Interview 2, Program Manager = PM, May 15th ,2005).
      KSM Kelompok Tukang Sapu Mandiri was established on the 17th of August 2004. At that time, the PKPU held independent day celebration together with street sweepers who work along Setia Budi street, Semarang. This celebration, which put "Peduli Tukang Sapu" (care of street sweepers) as a theme, was held in one of the PKPU donor’s house in Graha Estetika Tembalang resident. PKPU distributed "Bingkisan Merdeka" (independent day presents) and held informal discussions to explore information about street sweeper's family and strengths that can be developed to improve their welfare (Interview 2, PM, May 15th ,2005).
      From the discussion PKPU found out that almost all of the street sweepers had problems with their childrens' school fee and that they could only afford the school fee for the elementary levels. Quoting one of the street sweepers, the program manager said: "How can we afford a million school fee for high school for my children when my salary is only 150.000/ a month, so what will we eat, if we use the money to pay for our childrens' school fee". Finally, at the end of the celebration, the KSM Mandiri was established under the guidance of Central Java PKPU. Kasmin was elected to be the leader of this KSM (Interview 2, PM, May 15th ,2005).
      In implementing this program, according to PKPU staff, the PKPU provided loans from Zakat fund as monetary capital for income generating-activities. The loans were for 14 participants ranging from Rp. 200.000 to Rp. 400.000. Each participant had to return the money at Rp. 15.000/ a month. The PKPU encouraged regular savings by its participants of Rp. 500/ a day. This was in order to train them about saving money and not to burden them with returning the money. In fact, the money was to be used to pay for the school fee of participants' children. This would give back to the participant in the form of a scholarship for the children (Interview 3, PKPU staff, May 15th ,2005).
      Besides, providing loans, PKPU also offered training and guidance in biweekly meetings. In these meetings, PKPU gave information or thought to the participants about how to develop the business and motivated the participants to work hard. Besides, PKPU also gives religious teachings at the meetings. This was in order to strengthen their spirituality. Although they were grouped in one KSM, the participants ran their businesses individually. Most of the income-earning-activities of this KSM were related to small trades and business, such as cloth, cigarettes, tobacco, snacks, vegetables, food, and gasoline.
The CED Program: Between Goals and Outcome
      In order to easily examine the CED program undertaken by Central Java PKPU, the researcher summarizes the program by using a logic model in the figure below. This figure covers its problems, goals, inputs, activities, services and outcomes
      Participants' Problem and Program Goals. The purpose of the program is to change Mustahik into Muzakki. This goal is intended to answer the participants’ problems: pay the participants’ children's school fee, increase income, and decrease poverty. This refers to the Islamic religious terms that are mentioned in the law of Zakāt, which states that the privileged groups who have the rights to receive Zakāt are (al-faqr) the poor and (al-miskin) the needy in order to empower them. In fact, it is a long term goal that cannot be accomplished in a short time. Unfortunately, the PKPU does not place this goal as a long term goal because the PKPU does not divide the goals into short, medium and long terms goals. The PKPU also does not decide the characteristics of Muzakki that are put into the goal statement. As result, it is difficult to measure the progress of the activities toward the goals. The goal is in general terms that are supposed to be divided into objectives that can be measured over time.
      Inputs. Dealing with the input, particularly the Zakāt fund, the researcher found that the Zakāt Fund that PKPU used for the CED program was about 30% from the total amount of Zakāt funds. The other 70% was still used in humanity rescue, such as conflict, natural disaster, "minus areas" and rehabilitation activities. For instance educational, economic, religious, and healthy water facilities rehabilitation (Interview 2, PM. May 15th 2005). From the participant case studies, the researcher found that the participants felt that those funds are too little to run businesses. For instance, Bu Amin reported that Rp 200.000 is not enough to develop a business for selling vegetables. This also happened in the case of Bu Susi, who found difficulties in allocating Rp. 200.000 for small snack trade. According to the program manger, as previously mentioned, the reason is that the Zakāt fund which is used for undertaking the CED program is very limited. This lack of funds is because of the Muslims’ consciousness to pay Zakāt is very low.
      Conversely, the researcher thinks that the PKPU cannot solely blame the Muslims and depend on the consciousness of Muslims. There seemed to be some other aspects that cause the lack of Zakāt funds to which the Zakāt organizers’ in particular and non-profit organizations staff in general should pay closer attention.7 One aspect is fundraising strategy; how the Zakāt organizer (the PKPU in particular) does its fundraising activities has a direct influence on the amount of Zakāt fund. Fundraising, here, refers to the effort made by agencies to solicit and acquire resources from their environment to provide needed community services (Lewis, at al., 2001, p. 198). The Zakāt organization cannot only wait for donations from the society, but also have to actively engage in strategies in order to gain as much funding as possible.8
      Other aspects that caused the lack of funding were the accountability of the organization and the quality of services. This was because the donors (Muzakki) give their money when they see that the funds they give are used in an appropriate manner and accountable that the management staffs are. They also demand that the Zakāt funds be used for a good quality of services. According to Austin, the end of the twenty century marked a critical period for non-profit organizations. Recently, they are not only facing funding shortages, but "Funders are no longer willing to allocate funds simply on the basis of showing the need for the services the agency supplies. The watchwords of the day are accountability, impact, outcome effectiveness, and quality of services (Austin, 2002:395). 
      Program Activities. The figure 4.2 also mentions that the program activities comprise nine steps. In general, the steps that PKPU undertakes to solve the problem of poverty through CED program have been in accordance with the rational social work problem solving method. The initial activities are survey and problem identification. PKPU used this step to recognize and identify the problem within the street sweeper community and found that they faced a problem in their inability to afford the school fees of their children because they were low income workers and poor. To know more about the problem, PKPU invited them to a meeting.
      In gathering the data, in the case of KSM Mandiri, PKPU mainly gathered data from dialogue, interviews, and focus group discussion with the participants chosen. As a result, the PKPU only saw the problem of low income, poverty and the inability of the participants to pay their children's school fees. PKPU did not see the problem in the wider system of the participants. The question of why the people had a low income also had to be answered. In a wider context, one of the causes is come from the governmental policy of local autonomy. This policy had an implication to change the status of the participants' job; from private stakeholder to a local sub-district government. The effects of the policy were that their salaries decreased and they also did not get other facilities such as health care assurance and additional income when they worked late. This way of gathering data had an implication on the solution the PKPU chose. This was also because the CED's vision was liberal vision and mainly focused on community economy which did not examine the social and political context of the community.
      In developing alternative solutions, the PKPU undertook literature review, conducted a need assessment, made a social analysis to find the strength and weakness of the participants and the feasibility of developing small enterprises as a way of solving their problems. But in the literature review, the PKPU only examined the village monograph without paying attention to the related social policies that had a direct influence to the street sweeper community. From the analysis, the PKPU found that the participants faced three problems previously mentioned. In relation to these problems, the PKPU also found that the needs of the community entailed scholarships for their children, additional jobs and additional income.
      These findings indicate that PKPU saw the problem from the micro aspect of the individuals without seeing the macro aspects, the policy in the change of status from private workers to sub-district workers or the policy on the local autonomy and its implication for the street sweeper community. This affected the solution the PKPU implemented. The PKPU did not see the relation between local autonomy and the needs of the community. From the macro perspective the community also needed advocacy for obtaining their rights, such as an increase in salary to the regional minimum income of Semarang that is Rp 475.000. There was need for health care insurance, additional income when they worked late, facilities of work, and paid holidays. Three street sweepers I interviewed said that they had difficulty when they asked for a broom, tunjangan hari raya (THR), a paid holiday, health care insurance and additional income. In addition, the PKPU also had not used the group forum for popular education, in order to raise consciousness about oppression and marginalization of the street sweeper community.
      Output or Unit of Services. In terms of choosing a solution, instead of giving money to cope with the problem of participants' children school fee, the PKPU gave monetary capital from Zakāt to develop small businesses, and then the returned capital was given back to the participant as scholarships. This treatment did help people get jobs. It should be noted, however, that the money for paying school fees was an immediate need of the participants. From participant cases, the researcher found that two participants did not use all the money to develop the business. Part of the money was used to pay for their children's school fees.
      When the researcher asked Bu Aminah, a participant, about the result of her business which was funded by the Zakat Fund, she said:
Alah mas koy biasane. Aku karo simbok paling –paling oleh duwit cukup nggo mangan thok. Lapripun sak niki bathine telas theng ngge bayar kendaraan. BBM kan mundak mas.aku kudu mbayar Rp.10.000 nggo bayar ojek.(Interview3, Bu Aminah, May 21st ,2005).
It is just like usual. My mother and I just get enough money for my family daily needs (foods). Why? Because its profits spent much on transportation, I have a little profit. I have to pay Rp. 10.000 for transportation to the market (Interview3, Bu Aminah, May 21st ,2005).
      When the researcher asked her mother about the monetary capital that PKPU gives to Bu Aminah, her mother (who cooperated with Bu Aminah to do the business funded by the PKPU) said:
Wah aku ora ngerti dhik duwit sing seko PKPU, aku ora pernah nompo, la duwit niku kan kangge ngragati sekolah anek-e Aminah,anak-e kan tel;u sekolah kabeh (Interview4, Bu Aminah's mother, May 21st ,2005).
'I did not know about the money, yeach it is used for Amin's children school fee. You know, she has to pay for 3 children". So the money did not use to improve the business? No, Amin has never given the money for capital of this business (Interview4, Bu Aminah's mother, May 21st ,2005).
      It was also very clear in the case of Bu Susi and Bu Aminah. They also said that the important thing was that they could return the money in the agreed time. This finding meant that the PKPU was not seriously monitoring the use of the money. Consequently, the money would only become a charity for the participants. Ideally the PKPU should provide a form that each participant could fill out about how the money was used and how their business developed, or the PKPU staff through routine visits could ask the participants about the use of money and the development of business.
      In terms of choosing small enterprises as income earning activities in the CED program, it seemed a good choice. This was not only because small enterprises needed small amount of capital and required limited micro skills and simple administration processes, but according to Yustika because: first, the structure of Indonesian enterprises actually still depends on small enterprises, home industries, and middle enterprises, although the values and profit are relatively still very low. Developing these small enterprises will also improve the welfare of the society in general. Second, some people still do not realize that some of the products of small enterprises have export quality; that will in turn improve the state income. Third, the small enterprise sectors are more sustainable in macro economic conditions, such as the 1997 monetary crisis. Fourth, the small enterprises usually use local material rather than import (Yustika ,2003, p. 112-113)
      In developing strategies for change, the PKPU only gave a general statement of goals without putting these goals into objectives, measurable outcomes designed in a time frame, with tactics and tasks. This implied that the PKPU's CED program activities were not scheduled well. For example, the PKPU has planned and promised to give monetary capital and scholarships to the participants since August 2004, but the PKPU only gave the monetary capital in February 2005 and did not give the scholarships. According to the participants, this was too long a time to wait. Furthermore, in a routine meeting with the CED program participants, there was no PKPU staff present, thus participant went home. PKPU has promised to give scholarship for their children but the PKPU had not given up to the time when the researcher interviewed the participants. The participants were complaining about the scholarships because they wanted to use the scholarship to pay for their children's examination fee. This indicated that the PKPU did not divide the goal into objectives and decide on tasks to be accomplished.
      Dealing with monitoring and evaluation, the PKPU program conducted biweekly meetings and evaluated through routine visits of the PKPU staff and participants' reports. But, in terms of the training the participants to save the money Rp.500 a day, the PKPU did not monitor carefully because some participants said that they had never saved and directly paid Rp.15.000 from their salary as street sweepers. Ideally the PKPUY had to ask the participants to bring the saving box as evidence that they really saved the money day by day.
      As a result, the solution that the PKPU gave for poverty alleviation because it was not managed carefully, become charity for the individuals. This did not solve the problem; on the contrary, it let the problem continue. Abdurrahman Wahid notes:
The poverty eradication done by Muslims nowadays is still in the form of charity for the individual, Zakāt as an institution which has the possibility to solve the problem of poverty has not been applied comprehensively. As a result, Zakāt has not become a concrete and complete economic potential (Abdurrahman, 1997).
      Furthermore, Wahid proposed that if Muslim society regarded the problem of poverty only as an individual problem and not as a structural problem, this would only perpetuate poverty in a society, because this understanding of the problem would only be based on the exploitative economic structure that oppressed marginalized people. Moreover, if this simplistic understanding the problem of poverty was also in line with the scriptural approach to religious life and legal formalistic attitude toward social life and the apologetic world view, the problem would be more serious (Abdurrahman, 1997, p. 97-98).9
      Outcome. Finally, dealing with the outcome of the PKPU’s CED program, the researcher found that first, in terms of short term outcome (job opportunity), each participant had obtained additional jobs, although these jobs did not guarantee that the participant became self-sufficient and increased their income. These jobs were mainly small enterprises and comprised a fried snack seller, a vegetable seller, a tobacco and cigarette seller. Second, in terms of increasing income, from the participant cases, the researcher found that Mr. Kariman had increased his income, but that in the case of Mrs. Susi, Mrs. Amin and Bu Ayu, their income had not increased. In the case of Bu Maemunah, she would have a new small goat when the goat gave birth. Mr. Kariman said:
Kerjo nyapu mboten cekap mas ngge ngragati anak tigo lan tumbas sembako.Wong naming dibayar Rp. 200.000,- Untung mas, PKPU nyukanio modal Rp. 400,000, kanti modal meniko kulo saget sadeyan tembako kaleh rokok wonten ngajeng pabrik tektil ing Semarang lan Ungaran. Nggih Hasilipun lumayan, Rp. 15.000-30.000,- per sadean (Interview 5, Mr. Kariman, May 28th , 2005).
As a street sweeper my salary is very little. It is not enough to buy SEMBAKO (nine basic needs) for my living. Fortunately the PKPU gives me assistance so that I can sell cigarettes and tobacco." (Interview 5, Mr. Kariman, May 28th , 2005).
He also said that at the present time, Rp. 280.000 was not enough to fulfill his family basic needs. he did not have enough capital to develop his business as street vendor, until PKPU helped him.
And when the researcher asked him about his business, he also said:
Good. With Rp. 400.000 from PKPU I can by some cigarette and tobacco and sell them in front of two textile companies in Semarang and Ungaran, The result is from Rp. 15.000 up to Rp.30.000.(Interview 5, Kariman, May 28th ,2005).
      This means that he already had the job of selling tobacco and cigarette and he also already had customers, so that when he recieved the additional monetary capital he just developed the business, so that he has been successful in increasing his income. Although his income has increased (from Rp.200.000 to 450.000), it remains under a minimum regional income (Rp. 475.000/ a month). As a result, he is still in the position of Mustahik.
      Third, in terms of long term goals to change Mustahik into Muzakki, the CED program undertaken by Central Java PKPU has not been successful. The program has just been running for about four months. The long term outcome will only be seen after at least 5 years. When the researcher examined the participants' cases, such as Bu Aminah and Bu Susi, both had failed. The PKPU also did not use the returned money from the participants to improve the business. There was still a question whether the PKPU would give capital for the next year for instance to those who had failed and to those who wanted to improve the business since PKPU also has had a problem with limited donations and Zakāt funds to run such a program
      From the Zakat perspective, the program was based on substantial paradigm of Zakāt. It meant that the PKPU implemented Zakāt as a potential tool to alleviate poverty by using modern professional management, although it has not reached its ultimate outcome. This is because in understanding the problem of poverty, the PKPU still sees poverty from the micro-aspect of the individual and does not see it from a macro or structural perspective. In other words, to borrow Mansour Fakih's10 term, the CED program is still based on a modernist paradigm of fiqh and social problem (poverty) (Fakih, 1996). The roots of poverty faced by participant are the theological and mental aspects and a lack of monetary capital. The program should be focused on changing the mentality and giving monetary capital. From procedural justice perspective, the CED program, has to some extent, implemented the procedure in a just way. Two things that the PKPU's staffs must bear in mind are openness and honesty.
      The CED program is also evidence of the implementation of the second vision of BAZIS and LAZ, that is, to develop professional Zakat management. The CED program is done in light of professional management. Unfortunately, with regard to the scientific mission of BAZIZ and LAZ, the PKPU—as previously mentioned—rejected research on its program for unrealistic reasons. The PKPU manager and staff did not have time to assists the researcher collect data because they were very busy with the rescue program in Aceh. But when the researcher went and discussed about time management they finally gave the opportunity to the researcher to do research although it was not totally open. PKPU only allowed the researcher to examine one part of the program. It seems very ironic for the professional11 Zakat organization like the PKPU not to be open and transparent to the academic communities.
      Two points are lacking in the PKPU staff, that is, willingness to learn from other people by allowing the study of their Zakat organization and transparences toward the public about the programs that their undertake. Without a strong commitment to the "scientific mission" of Zakat management, by allowing research on Zakat organization and program implementation, the development of Zakat management, poverty alleviation program, and the Muslims' consciousness raising regarding with Zakat will stagnate.
      From a CED theoretical perspective, PKPU's CED program has adopted a liberal vision of a CED which emphases the economic growth of the community. This can be traced from, first, the goal of the program that is to change the poor and the needy to Muzakki. The PKPU has not characterized the minimal standard of the Muzakki that they want to accomplish. Second, the activities of the program focus on developing community economy through extending monetary capital and training to develop small enterprises. In fact, such micro enterprise could function not only as a strategy for job creation and self sufficiency, but also as a way to empower low income people, provide economic opportunity, and help them exit the secondary labor market (Sanders, 2004, p.83). In other words, it can be used as a strategy to encourage both economic development and social development. On the contrary, the PKPU has only challenged personal poverty rather than structural poverty.
      With regard to the type, this CED program is conservative and thus, it does not really empower the participant in the wider perspective of empowerment which includes social and political empowerment. In this case, the PKPU initiates income generating activities in the form of very small enterprises by giving monetary capital rather than creating cooperative credit unions and community banks. These enterprises, as mentioned previously, are integrated animal husbandries, street vendor development, and home industry development.
      This idea is based on the assumption that the community's economy does not develop because of hindrances, such as the lack of monetary capital, low skill levels, inefficient productive patterns, and poor market networking and lack of technical support. As a result, the assistance is focused on extending monetary capital and training skills without paying attention to other the participant needs such as advocacy for their rights. These small enterprises will have difficulty to expand or perhaps even stagnate because of the market processes which are dictated by the macro economic environment.
      From the criteria of CED, the CED program undertaken by the PKPU is a good CED. This is because; first the program has provided benefits to the participants in terms of job opportunities and monetary capital, religious teachings, and additional income. Second, the CED program that is mainly extends micro-credit also involves beneficial linkage with the business that participants were engaged in before they received the assistance from PKPU. Third, the program is also free from environmental destruction, such as pollution and traffic congestion. The participants run their businesses at the appropriate places and times. Fourth, the CED program does not change the structure of the community.
V. Conclusion
      In short, what is perhaps most apparent from this study is that low-income people, regardless of the job sector in which they worked, struggled to move out of poverty. Their participation in the CED program undertaken by the Central Java PKPU through small and micro enterprise assistance does not appear to have had any significant anti-poverty outcomes. This conclusion is stated with caution, because the program has just been running for a few months.
      Hence the researcher recommends the following points: First, PKPU has to see poverty not only from the micro aspect of the individual but also from a macro aspect which includes social and political sphere. Therefore, the PKPU has to use empowerment approach and procedural justice as a way of change the Mustahik into Muzakki. Second, the researcher is firmly convinced that PKPU in particular and social service organizations in general should not only focus on empowering clients (participants) in the consumption of services but also adopt a broader societal perspective to combat power inequalities. In other words, the fight against poverty must include a focus on promoting a better sense of self and independence. As we device new ways to change the system in the direction of greater equity in resources, we must utilize these participants' experiences to improve antipoverty programs and work toward elimination of poverty in this country. Third, PKPU has to emphasize not only professional management but also a scientific mission of professional Zakāt organizations (BAZIZ) or LAZ). Accordingly, PKPU has to be more open the other parties, especially “academic community.”
      Indeed, this present study is limited to examining the CED program which is undertaken by central Java PKPU. Because the research uses only a qualitative phenomenological approach, and does not use a quantitative approach, this study does not provide statistical data and analysis. Consequently, this study cannot prove the findings with statistical data. In addition, due to various reasons, Central Java PKPU only allowed the researcher to do research one group of the CED programs; the data and the subject were limited mainly to street vendor empowerment. This study also employs only formative program evaluation and qualitative research. Further studies are needed to delve deeper into quantitative research or cost benefit analysis and summative program evaluation to see the efficiency of the program for developing community economy. This study only presents a single case; further studies and investigation are needed to see the wider experiences of CED programs undertaken by Zakāt organizations in Indonesia in general.


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Law: Act. No 38\ 1999 on Zakat Management

1 The paper mainly draws upon the M.A. thesis submitted by the author to the School of Graduate Studies, State Islamic University Sunan Kalijaga, Yogyakarta, Indonesia, August, 2005.

2 The author is the former student of Interdisciplinary Islamic Studies - Social Work –Community Development Program.

3 Zakat is the requirement to pay alms to the needy on the behalf of one’s family and business. It is customarily calculated as an annual payment of 2.5 percent of all capital assets, savings, and current income above a specified threshold, nisab (Al-Krenawi, 2003).

      4 Formative evaluation here has the main purpose of collecting information that can be used primarily for ongoing development and improvement (Patton; 1980).

      5 Quoting Chamber et al., Proudfoot (1995) mentions that the goal of constructivist evaluation is to observe, document, interpret, and analyze as fully as possible the multiple realities of the problem in a particular social context from the participant point of view.

      6participant focused evaluation is â€œan approach which uses primarily qualitative measurement, and which values the perspective and interest of the participant involved in a group or project to be evaluated as the basis of an evaluation of how well the group or project is meeting its own objectives" (Ellis et al., 1990:59). 

      7 There are two problems regarding Zakāt implementation. The first problem deals with Indonesian Muslims' understanding of Zakāt. This is because of the lack information about Zakāt both formally and informally. Another aspect is that the available books discussing Zakāt merely discuss Zakat in old contexts, for instance, Zakāt is only discussed from legalistic perspective and the things that are subject to Zakāt are limited to the properties that were in the period of the Prophet. Another aspect is that some Muslims do not know how to calculate the percentage of Zakāt that they have to pay from their properties. The second problem deals with management and organization of Zakāt. This problem includes (a) the lack of qualified professional human resources and infrastructure to develop a good organization management, (b) the lack of openness and honesty from Zakāt organizers. This problem leads to the low level of trust among Muslims with Zakāt organization both governmental and private. 

      8 These strategies may include performing outdoor events, for example: a donkey derby, market stall; and in door events, such as a colorful evenings, craft fairs, book fairs, theme parties, sales parties, jumble sales, an 'Idul-fitri fair; and other ideas for fundraising activities, for example: television and radio appeal, 'Idul fitri cards, the Governor appeals, sell advertising space, children’s clothing’s exchange, Muslim fashion shows, afternoon tea parties, paper back book sales, etc. It should be noted, however, that to be successful in implementing fundraising strategies, there are six points that have to be taken into account by Zakāt organizers. These points comprise (a) clear identification of the cause, (b) leadership and organization of personnel, (c) overall strategies and timetable, (d) advance preparation, (d) marketing of the cause, and (e) establishing trust between donors and cause (McCallum, 1992, p.11). 

9 In accordance with this idea, Abdurrahman Wahid, who Abdurrahman (1997) quotes offers the needs : (1) to relate the effort of poverty alleviation with attempt to place human being on its nature as social being who has basic rights and needs, (2) religious legitimation is only needed for societal reason that support human values/ human dignity, and (3) the willingness to changing the religious paradigm to increase human dignity and society function so that Muslims see poverty not only from the micro perspective, but also from macro and structural perspectives.

10 Mansour Fakih (1996, p.5-8) categorizes Muslim’s paradigm on social ideology into four groups: Traditionalist, Modernist, Revivalist, and Transformative. First, Traditionalist (conservative) understand social problem including poverty as “a fate” from God or God’s destiny, second, modernist see the root of poverty from the religious theology and mentality aspects, third, revivalist (fundamentalist) see the problem from both internal and external factors. What they mean by internal factor is that Muslims do not use Qur’an as their way of life, but Muslims use western ideology. Externally, fundamentalist also see that Marxism, Capitalisms, Zionism, Christianity, and other western ideologies are against Islamic ideology, fourth, transformative, the transformative followers see the problem of poverty is caused by unjust and unequal economic, politic, and cultural system and structures (see also Fakih (2004) in Sarapung, Elga, et al., (2004), Spiritualitas Baru: Agama dan Aspirasi Rakyat,(New Sprituality: Religion and Society’s Aspiration) Yogyakarta: Interfidei). 

11 In fact, professionalism involves some of the following characteristics: (a) competency; having a full understanding of Zakat law and Zakat organizational management, (b) strong commitment to work and spend times, (c) the willingness to learn and improve human resources quality, (d) the willingness to be members of the related profession, (e) the willingness to adhere a professional code of ethics, lastly, (f) the Zakat organizations have to be open and transparent to the public (Mas'ud and Muhammad, 2005, p. XVI).

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