Balad is an Arabic word meaning the Land.
Be like the Honey Bee, anything it eats it eats is clean, anything it drops is sweet, and the branch it sits upon does not break.
-Imam Ali (AS)
Traditional societies lived in balance with each other and their environment. Structures were inclusive through every stage of human life.
The aim of Balad is to:
i) Create opportunity and wealth through investment and trade and;
ii) Re-invest to empower communities through sustainable development.
Balance and fair distribution of wealth is key to sustainable development, where communities can flourish and the Balad ecosystem for creating sustainable communities is as follows:
Charity is the foundation of our community. It purifies wealth and brings blessing to an individual and the community.
In a world where charity has become big business, Balad aims to rediscover the Purpose of Charity, where 100% of donations received are spent directly on the Charitable Projects IsA (In’sha Allah [God Willing]).
How can this be achieved?
The first step was to establish a charity, the Balad Foundation, registered in the United Kingdom (Charity number 1192626), which collects donations and manages charitable development projects. Two of the Trustees are experienced Project Managers (Chartered Surveyor and Building Surveyor) with 20 years of experience each. Their contribution is on a purely voluntary basis leading to huge cost savings. In time we will be looking for other volunteers to help with the charity’s work IsA.
The second step is to hold all the operation costs separately within an operating company, Balad Ltd, a company registered in the United Kingdom. Balad Ltd (Company Registration Number 09026647) is responsible for the operating expenses associated with running the charity, so none of these expenses are deducted from donations.
Please Note: Charity operating expenses are separate from Charity project expenses. Balad Ltd. is responsible for only the operating expenses, in order that 100% of donations received can be spent on the project expenses. There are third party costs like payment gateway, crowd funding platform costs, bank fees etc., which are deducted before some donations reach the Balad Foundation. Our 100% donation policy is related to net funds we receive. We are working hard to to build our community of donors who send funds by direct bank transfer or standing order to reduce some of these third party costs.
In order to implement our 100% donation policy for our Charity, the Balad Foundation, we need to generate income through creating investments. We already have a UK company, Balad Ltd, and have established an Egyptian Company, Balad (Egypt Real Estate & Trade) Ltd. which will focus on Real Estate brokerage and Africa Trade IsA.
Prior to those entities becoming profitable, we will continue to be responsible for subsidizing the operating expenses of the Balad Foundation.
Once our commercial entities become profitable IsA, profits will go back into sustainable development projects through the Balad Foundation and partnering with other Charities and NGOs IsA.
This follows the model of establishing a Waqf or endowment to manage the operational costs of your charitable activities.
Outcome – Community Building
We cannot solve the insecurity a majority of the world’s population living from hand to mouth with no assets or pension , but we believe our model will play its small part in being part of the solution IsA.
When we can create wealth from communities for communities, we hope those communities can once again thrive and restore the balance IsA.