Dubai launches world's first virtual charity foundation

Islamic Affairs & Charitable Activities Department announces plan as part of Dubai's 10X initiative
By Sam Bridge
Thu 24 May 2018 01:54 PM

The Islamic Affairs & Charitable Activities Department, in corporation with Dubai Future Foundation, has developed two artificial intelligence (AI) projects - the Virtual Charity Foundation and Virtual Ifta.

The Virtual Charity Foundation is the world’s first charity institution that allows donations to be routed directly from donor to beneficiary with the use of AI and blockchain technology.

It eliminates the need for counterparties and significantly reduces waiting periods for the beneficiary. The initiative aims to protect the identity of beneficiaries as well as open new ways for community groups from around the world to search and identify charitable aid opportunities.

Virtual Ifta is a platform that uses a computer system that emulates the decision-making ability of a human expert and big data technology to streamline the process of disseminating fatwas, a statement said.

It aims to facilitate a more instant experience and reduce duplications by removing the need for muftis to repeat answers for the same questions. The platform also allows muftis to instantly answer a vast range of queries posed by millions of people around the world.

Both project are its contribution to the Dubai 10X initiative, which aims to place Dubai 10 years ahead of other cities.

Through the two projects, the Department seeks to create a flexible and intelligent environment to enhance charitable activities, strengthen its efforts to deliver and document fatwas, and serve the community through innovative services, the statement added.

Dr Hamad bin Al Shaikh Ahmed Al Shaibani, director general of the Islamic Affairs & Charitable Activities Department, said: "As part of its participation in the Dubai 10X initiative, the Department has developed interactive smart platforms using advanced artificial intelligence technologies to enhance philanthropy and create a new method for delivering fatwas.

"These projects are in line with the Dubai Government’s objective of promoting innovation in all sectors to enable Dubai to establish global leadership in shaping the future.”

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Last Updated: Thu 24 May 2018 01:58 PM GST

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