The fashion industry can be a cold and cut-throat world, but one happy-go-lucky Muslim woman is bringing warmth to it, one clothing collection at a time.
Iman Nakhala is a fashion designer from Montreal; arguably the main hub of arts and culture in Canada. Originally from Palestine, Iman was born in Saudi Arabia in 1986 and moved with her family to Quebec in 1993.
“My parents moved us to Canada in 1993 to get a higher education just like they did. I’m bi-cultural and proud of it,” she says.
Like many young Muslims raised in the West, Iman often found herself straddling more than one identity.
A painting hangs on a wall in Montreal’s Museum of Fine Arts. In varying hues of blue, soft yellow and beige, it is the portrait of a young woman. Her head is tilted slightly, her eyes looking into the distance. She is tight lipped with a resolved look on her face, but most noticeable of all is her sky-blue headscarf, emblazoned with a yellow Fleur-de-Lys- the national symbol of Quebec.
This is a self-portrait of Zahraa Sbaiti, a visual artist from Montreal, Quebec. Born and raised in Canada, Zahraa is 24 years old and of Lebanese decent. She is a student at Concordia University, soon graduating with a Bachelor’s of Fine Arts.
Mode-ste, Canada’s largest and fastest growing Modest Fashion brand. started a few years ago, when Aicha Chtourou and her mother Hong, a master seamstress, started a small women’s clothier out of their basement in Montreal.
Montreal-based Syrian Canadian journalist Oussayma Canbarieh has made multiple documentaries exploring the challenges faced by Muslims navigating their identity within North American societies. In particular, her ground-breaking web series for Radio Canada International, “Me, The Muslim Next Door”, follows the lives of seven young Muslim Canadians in Montreal and Toronto. Oussayma was awarded the Lys de la Diversité Prize for web-journalism in 2013.
With a new Liberal government in Quebec, the controversy around the proposed “Charter of Values” has abated. And while the new Premier has expressed his intent to address issues of reasonable accommodation, the divisiveness that marked the Parti Quebecois’ time in office has all but disappeared from the political discourse.
Muslim Link spoke to Rabbi Chaim Steinmetz of the Tifereth Beth David Jerusalem congregation in Montreal for his reaction to the election results.
Like many of her peers, at 22, Nafeesa Salar had her hands full with her full-time university and a part-time job. But her love and passion for art and design inspired her to take a bold move two years ago and launch her own business, Salar Event Planning, a Montreal-based event planning company.
UmmahHub and Anfiq are two new Ottawa-based crowd-funding platforms aimed at providing more sophisticated fundraising options for Muslim communities in order to address one of the most common problems facing the community: fundraising fatigue.
Over 200 participants turned up for the 36th Montreal Muslim Ball Hockey (MMBH) tournament on May 11 at John Abbott College campus in Montreal. For the first time since it was founded 21 years ago, the bi-annual tournament featured two tiers, with five elite teams playing in Tier I and the remaining thirteen teams competing in Tier II.
Tier I finals featured perennial favourites Green Army, who were an all-Montreal team save for Ottawa star goaltender Aneel Anwar Nauth, emerging victorious over a team consisting of mainly Toronto-area players. The first period had Green Army with a slight 2-1 advantage, which they later opened up further and routed their opponents by a score of 7-1. Green Army captain Sophian Mian, well established as one of the top players in Montreal, incurred an injury during the finals but returned to score a goal in leading his team to their sixth ever championship.
On Dec. 1, the Montreal Muslim Ball Hockey Tournament celebrated its 20th anniversary with its 35th tournament held at John Abbott College in Ste. Anne-de-Bellevue.
The mainly bi-annual tournament is a volunteer-driven, non-profit event that has been a longstanding tradition for Montreal's Muslim community. It began in 1992 with five teams at the NDG YMCA and has continued to grow, now regularly attracting up to 20 teams and around 200 Muslim youth and adults, typically aged 15 to 45, from across Quebec, Ontario, as well as Canada and the United States.