Many children become orphans as a result of various disastrous incidents such as tsunami, floods, earthquakes and a lot more other factors. Therefore, the issue of caring for these orphaned kids becomes a task that has to be dealt with. The government may send many orphaned kids to orphanages.
There are a lot of couples who cannot give birth to children and would wish to adopt a child or would want to add one to the family so as to make the family bigger, and there are also some that may have children of their own and may wish to adopt a child so as to help and take care of the child they are adopting.
The Importance of Caring for Orphans in Islam
Our beautiful religion has careful considerations towards orphans.
It was narrated in a Hadith that our beloved Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) said; “The one who supports an orphan and I are like two in Paradise”, then he joined his middle and index fingers together.
Our beloved Prophet himself was fed by an adopted mother during the first couple years of his life, and he himself also adopted a child as well.
In the eyes of Allah, orphans are so important that it is stated in the Noble Qur’an that:
“Indeed those who consume the property of orphans wrongfully, only ingest fire into their bellies, and soon they will enter the blaze.”( An-Nisa-10)
In Islam, there are specific rules regarding the adoption of children.
Family lineage and biological parents are very important in Islam, so therefore the adoption of a child must not occur in such a way that the child will lose his/her family affiliations. It is important to note that according to Islam, lineage can only be inherited from biological parents. Therefore, by adopting a child, the adoptive family will not be the lineage of the child.
Child adoption is prohibited (Haram) in cases where according to Islamic law, where the adoptive parents accepts and considers the child as their real child.
However, child protection (Kifalah) is highly recommended in Islam, such that the child is being cared for by his/her adoptive parents, and he/she will be informed of his/her real lineage at a suitable age.
Hence it is not a problem to accept a child as his/her protector (Kafil). It becomes a problem when adoptive parents keep the child in the dark about his/her biological parents. It can be hard to tell a child that he/she is not the family’s real child, but consultations can help parents find an appropriate way of telling the truth to the adopted child about his/her real family.
Moreover, Islam highly recommends the support and protection of orphans with financial and spiritual support in all aspects of their lives.