Selangor Journal
Yusma Yunus bags the Special Award – Asnaf Bestari at the Asnaf Cemerlang Awards 2023 ceremony at Hotel Mardhiyah, Shah Alam on December 3, 2023. — Picture by REMY ARIFIN/SELANGORKINI

Single mom shoulders family after being widowed, with help from LZS

SHAH ALAM, Dec 3— Yusma Yunus’ resilience, strengthened by passion and purpose, in joining an entrepreneurship programme organised by the Lembaga Zakat Selangor (LZS) after her husband died of colon cancer in 2008, was amply rewarded when she received the successful female entrepreneur award here today.

The 54-year-old frozen food trader was awarded the Special Award — Asnaf Bestari for 2022 at the Asnaf Cemerlang Awards 2023 ceremony, organised by LZS.

Yusma, who has four children aged between 20 and 27, said she was indebted to LZS for supporting her family, especially in terms of sponsoring the children’s education and assisting her in her business.

“It was not easy to start over after the death of my husband, especially with young children. But I am grateful I had my parents’ support. 

“They helped me look after my children while I attended the entrepreneurship course organised by LZS,” she told reporters after the award ceremony at a hotel here.

Yusma said as an asnaf (tithe recipient), she and her family received numerous aid, including for her children’s education, her business and house repair, as well as a van from Teraju Ekonomi Asnaf Sdn Bhd.

“In the beginning, LZS provided educational assistance for my children and Hari Raya assistance. After I joined the LZS courses, I received business assistance and started focusing on this field in 2016.

“During the movement control order, my business grew and received a very encouraging response. But the floods in 2021 destroyed a lot of my products. The assistance from LZS helped me get back on my feet,”  said Yusma, who is now able to pay tithe.

She was removed as an asnaf in December 2022.

She said the assistance provided by LZS enabled three of her children to continue their studies until university-level, while one chose to help her with her frozen food business.

Meanwhile, LZS chief executive officer Mohd Sabirin Mohd Sarbini said the agency was able to assist more than 2,000 asnaf this year through entrepreneurship programmes, which included funding and training.

“LZS has now helped over 68,000 poor families, including the asnaf,  as well as over 6,000 Muslim converts in Selangor.

“This figure is expected to increase in the coming years. Based on the analysis by the Statistics Department, the number of asnaf families in Selangor is expected to reach 157,000 by 2030,” he said.

— Bernama

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