Zakat from the MCC is paid to deserving individuals who fall into one or more of eight Zakatable categories designated by God in the Qur’an.

Indeed, [prescribed] charitable offerings are only [to be given] to the poor and the indigent, and to those who work on [administering] it, and to those whose hearts are to be reconciled, and to [free] those in bondage, and to the debt-ridden, and for the cause of God, and to the wayfarer. [This is] an obligation from God. And God is all-knowing, all-wise.
Al-Tawbah, 9:60

A deserving person is someone whose property, in excess of his or her basic requirements, does not reach the nisab threshold.

  1. Fuqaraa: The poor, destitute who has little or nothing to live on; who might be unemployed, old, incapacitated, handicapped, sick, homeless, widow, or an orphan.
  2. Masakeen: This is the needy who does not have enough to meet basic needs and who depends on others but abstains from begging.
  3. Amileen: These are those who collect and disburse the zakat, regardless of their financial condition.
  4. Mu’allaf ul Quloob: One who recently accepted Islam and who needs encouragement and assistance and to remove restrictions and oppression where Muslims are prevented from practicing their faith
  5. Fir-Riqaab: For the ransoming or freeing of slaves and bonded labor, including to debt in the 21st Century
  6. Gharimeen: A person who is in debt to the extent that, after paying off the debt, he or she would be left with no possessions over and above the Nisab. This is provided the debt is not incurred for unlawful acts such as luxurious living, gambling or drinking.
  7. Fi Sabeelillah: Activities that are in the cause of Allah for the propagation of Islam and the Islamic community as a whole and it includes all good works that pertain to religious and secular matters that please God
  8. Ibn as Sabeel: This is for a traveler who became destitute and cannot benefit from his or her wealth while away from his or her home while on a journey. This includes immigrants who have left their homes and their belongings because he or she was compelled by political oppression, war, and racial or religious hatred or persecution.