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.
While it is home to many brilliant artists, Ottawa is mostly known as a working city and not necessarily for its art scene. Hoping to change the future of art in her city, and perhaps the world, one Muslim woman has a few initiatives up her sleeve.
Dr. Izzeldin Abuelaish received his elementary, preparatory and secondary educations in the refugee camp school system in Jabalia, Gaza. As a child and as an adult, he and his family endured the dismal and severely impoverished conditions of the refugee camp, as well as the constant humiliation and inhumanity of the siege and its associated checkpoints and travel restrictions.
At all times, Dr. Abuelaish strived to maintain a balanced and positive perspective toward his experiences and the Israeli people, knowing that the latter are not representative of the sentiments that fuel one of the world’s longest conflicts and the conflict that threatens overall world security.
For many people, the first thought that comes to mind about Palestine is tragic conflict not intricate embroidery. It is an unfortunate reality, but one budding Canadian business is slowly changing that.
Motarrazat is an Ottawa based clothing company started by Palestinian Canadian Manal Abusheikha. Having immigrated to Canada from Jordan with her husband and children in 2001, she left behind most of her extended family and friends. In the beginning, the couple started a small business and sought to finish school. Manal’s husband, Waleed, soon graduated in project management and she enjoyed looking through his textbooks which prompted her to also get her masters in the same field. Her interest in business led her to open her own day care and later on, her very own clothing company.
Ramadan, the time of year when we fast all through the day and then treat ourselves with traditional favourites that are often fried, high in calories, and laden with sugar and fat. It can be a challenge to eat healthy when confronted with a plate of crispy fried samosas, oh-so-sweet halwa, or flaky qatayaf at iftar (meal to break the fast).
Rawan Suleiman, a registered dietitian shares strategies on how we can eat healthy in Ramadan.
Muslim Link had the opportunity to interview Mohammed Al Rayyan and his wife Dima Siam, who is facing deportation to Syria. A petition was launched on March 8th, International Women’s Day, demanding that the new Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, John McCallum, grant Dima permanent residency. Dima hopes that members of Ottawa's Muslim community would consider supporting her cause and signing the petition.
Dr. Habib Khoury, 42, is a Palestinian Canadian practicing dentistry at Centrum Dental Care in Kanata. Last year, he came up with the idea of finding an innovative way to raise funds for the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA)’s Community Mental Health Program. The program supports Palestinians, particularly children, who are coping with mental health issues such as Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).