For 21 years, Fatima Omar Khamissa was a victim of an abusive marriage which destroyed all the hopes and dreams she had for herself. She took her five children and left that marriage and today, Fatima is the the CEO of Spiritual Biz Moms, leading provider of training and coaching for women who feel stuck, frustrated, and tired of living lives without satisfaction, meaning, and progress. The trauma of abuse, apartheid and violence was not able to break Fatima’s spirit and as an international best selling Author, Fatima is sharing her message to inspire, motivate, and lead women all over the world to continual growth in both personal and professional life. Women choose Spiritual Biz Moms because Fatima is not “just another coach”, instead she’s a real business strategist and thought leader who creates custom plans for you that details practical strategies for overcoming obstacles to unlock your greatest abilities.
Shireen Ahmed is a writer, public speaker and Sports Activist focusing on Muslim women in Sports. She is an athlete, advocate, community organizer, and works with Youth of Colour on empowerment projects and is an avid sports coach and mentor. She is a regular contributor to Muslimah Media Watch, a Global Sports Correspondent for Safe World For Women and works on the Muslim Women in Sports website.
Samra Zafar is a Commercial Account Manager at RBC Royal Bank. She is the award recipient of multiple awards and a graduate of the University of Toronto, a Public Speaker, an upcoming Author, and the Founder of Brave Beginnings, an organization dedicated to helping women find personalized mentorship, friendship and support to rebuild their lives after oppression and abuse.
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.
Ginella Massa has made history once again. In January 2015, she became the first hijabi TV news reporter on mainstream Canadian Television. On November 18 2016, she was asked to sit in as news anchor on City TV, where she currently works as a reporter, thus becoming the first hijabi to anchor a newscast in Canada.
Update: Homa Hoodfar has been released from prison. Read Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's statement in response to her release here
Canadian Iranian Professor Homa Hoodfar teaches in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology at Concordia University. She has been in the notorious Evin prison in Iran for over three months without charge supposedly under investigation for "dabbling in feminism and security matters". Her students and fellow academics, as well as friends and human rights activists have been rallying to see her set free. To learn more about Hoodfar's situation and how you can help, please visit the website Free Homa here
In the Ottawa community, it's a challenge to meet someone who does not know Khadija Haffajee. She is seen as a pioneering figure in the nation’s capital, as well as on a global scale as a lecturer, educator, mentor and social activist. But not everyone knows the unique backstory on how a South African woman ended up holding such a public role in Canada.
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.
On February 17th, the Ottawa Hijab Solidarity Day was held at City Hall. The City for All Women Initiative (CAWI) partnered with the Ottawa Coalition to End Violence Against Women, the Ottawa Local Immigration Partnership (OLIP), and the Coalition of Community Health and Resource Centres to hold the event.
Vancouver-based writer Rahat Kurd has recently published a collection of poetry entitled Cosmophilia. Her collection explores her personal journey as a Kashmiri Muslim Canadian woman grappling with faith, identity, history, family and the traumatic and ever present legacy of the partition of India and Pakistan. She will be in Ottawa on March 29th and in Toronto on April 9th reading from her collection. Muslim Link interviewed her about her writing.