25. Dhul Qadah 1438  Jumu'ah
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EXEMPLIFICATION IN IMPROVING THE LOCAL ECONOMY

At a small hillock village known as Pacet Mojoker, situated about two hour drive from Surabaya, Indonesia, and perched overlooking a valley is a residential religious school called Riyadlul Jannah. It was founded by Kiyai Mahfudz Shaybari, murid of Al-Syed Muhammad b Alwi Al Maliki from Mekah. The school accommodates and financially supports most of the 380 students, the youngest being five year old orphans. Although the school curriculum abides by the official State syllabus, some are streamlined early in ‘tafaquh fi-din’ so as to become teachers with expertise in religious jurisprudence and while some others on gaining some expertise in managing shops.

Riyadlul Jannah is built on a two hectare site. Despite the constraint of a sloping terrain, the school managed to get involved in organic farming.

 

rice field cultivated next to the greenhouses

 

Polythene wrapped greenhouses are built which are used for organic vegetable gardening, fitted with manually operated water sprinkler system. It was explained that the output production increases with the sprinkler system against the use of water derived from the normal rain. Also an interesting method of pest control is by spraying water mixed with discarded tobacco residue. The pests escape from one end of the greenhouse towards an opening at the other end, without affliction from injury.

Kiyai Mahfudz Shaybari eventually acquired more parcels of land nearby making it a total of seven hectares.

He set up a small supermarket for the students to gain experience in managing a retailer shop but did have a larger one located nearby which has higher resident population..

He then went on to further assist selected residents in the vicinity who have small parcels of land to start dairy farming. He provides joint venture capital for each person to purchase two cattle. . He did not venture into goat rearing as there were no veterinary services nearby

Having a base in agricultural produce, it was only natural to set up a fast food franchise called Quick Chicken. With good control on its finances, hygiene and disciplined staff and above all, the low price charge, this venture was an instantaneous success especially among the youth. He offered other Muslims to join in this business enterprise. He also set up normal restaurants specialising in ayam kampong (naturally reared fowls)

Kiyai Mahfudz Shaybari spirit on Islamic entrepreneurship does not stop here but goes on to set up a co- operative organisation involved in a 2,000 hector of oil palm plantation, in which he only owned a 40 hector share only.

In passing, it is worth reporting that he has many children who are all hafiz and hafizat (memoriser and recitalist of Al-Quran)