‘Some people asked us not to collect rawhide in teams, due to health concerns’
Amidst the ongoing pandemic, the orphanages in the country fear that they would be able to collect far fewer rawhide this season, compared to previous Eids.
Some of the charity organizations think that there might be a liquidity crisis in their yearly budget.
Around 1,400 children are living at the Shahbag Jamia Madania Qasimul Uloom Madrasa and Orphanage in Zakiganj of Sylhet.
In the last Eid-ul-Azha, they earned Tk27,900 by collecting and selling rawhide. Due to the pandemic, the orphanage linked to Qawmi Madrasa targeted to collect rawhide in a small scale and requested donors to send them to its premises.
Mufti Masud Uddin Chowdhury, vice principal of the orphanage, said: “We presume the rawhide collection may be less than last year and though we are not dependent on this fund, it will definitely affect the yearly budget.”
“Although rawhide traders pay very low prices, 15 years ago the prices were much better. Nowadays, it's just routine work for us. Not a profitable venture really,” the mufti added.
The authority allocates on average Tk3,500 to 4,000 for every child which fluctuates considering the price of groceries and other daily necessities.
The orphanage mainly collects their funds from the donors at home and abroad. Two semi-annual mahfil and yearly grants from the department of social welfare adds to the fund, he said.
More than 200 children are staying at the Sir Salimullah Muslim Orphanage in Dhaka.
According to the authority, the organization normally targets collecting 500 rawhide, especially from those animals which are sacrificed on the orphanage premises. But this year, the authority fears a lower collection.
Alamin, a senior student, and supervisor of the voluntarily rawhide collection team for Jamiatul Abrar Rahmania orphanage and Qawmi Madrasa at Basila in Dhaka said normally, around 1,500 student volunteers collect rawhide from all over Dhaka.
“Last Eid, we collected 1,800 rawhide. But this year, only 500 students would be deployed as volunteers due to the pandemic,” he said.
“Some people asked us not to collect rawhide in teams, due to health concerns. The amount of collection would therefore fall this year,” added Alamin.
Mufti Abul Hasan, teacher at Lamargram Qawmi Madrasa said a total of 140 orphans reside at the madrasa. “Every year they collect rawhide worth Tk2-3 lakh. But this year, the authorities have no plan on how they would collect rawhide of sacrificial animals.”
According to the Department of Social Welfare under the Ministry of Social Welfare, in the last fiscal year, it paid capitation grants to 3,928 private orphanages which have more than 193,352 residents.