JAKARTA –Rumah Zakat continues to focus on integrated poverty alleviation programs including through the strengthening of SMEs. The main SME target of Rumah Zakat is rural, considering the large number of rural poor.

CEO of Rumah Zakat Nur Efendi explained, poverty alleviation and empowerment of SMEs are closely related. Citing data from the latest BPS data, the number of poor people as of September 2016 reached 27.76 million people or 10.7 percent. Of the total, 17 million are in the village.

The distribution of zakat, infaq, and sadaqah funds by Rumah Zakat is channeled into integrated program; health, education, environment and economic programs. One of them is Empowere Village (Desa Berdaya) program that focuses on the village. Until June 2017 there are about 5,000 SMEs assisted by Rumah Zakat.

See also the previous data, Rumah Zakat focus in the village to alleviate poverty and in order to suppress unemployment. Rumah Zakat is determined to reduce one percent of the poor every year.

Citing BPS, Nur Efendi said to be a developed country, the portion of entrepreneurs in Indonesia must be 10 percent and currently the portion of employers in Indonesia has 3.1 percent. Looking at the data, 95 percent of the workforce was absorbed in SMEs.

” That way, Rumah Zakat believes the strengthening of SME product image will contribute greatly to reduce poverty and make Indonesia great, ” said Nur Efendi in the media meeting Rumah Zakat with DM ID in Senayan area on Thursday (7/20).

So far, 200 SMEs have experienced training in strengthening product image with DM ID in Bandung and Jakarta. The training is called SME School followed by representatives of SMEs assisted by Rumah Zakat from various regions.

” They feel more confident with the benefits of their products. Because the important thing is the mindset that their products are able to compete in the local or international, ” said Nur Efendi.

As of June 2017, there are 3,844 independent SMEs become empowered from the 5,000 SMEs assisted by Rumah Zakat. There are even products that have entered into a large retail network. Rumah Zakat wants all the SMEs can be empowered.

In addition, Rumah Zakat also seeks market access for SMEs under its assistance. Most of the SMEs are food producers and some of them have already entered major retail networks.

Online direct sales are running. Moreover Rumah Zakat has been working with a national online sale and purchase page and a telko company, according to Rumah Zakat, sales through social media is optimal and effective.

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