Amira Elghawaby is Muslim Link’s Editorial Advisor. She is providing professional guidance and training to the Muslim Link team and writers. Amira is also developing relevant newspaper and website policies and a style guide. Amira obtained a degree in Journalism and Law from Carleton University in 2001. Since then, she has worked as both a full-time and freelance journalist and editor, writing and producing stories for a variety of media including the Globe and Mail, the Toronto Star, CBC-Radio, Rabble and the Middle East Times. She is the History Editor for New Canadian Media. Find her on Twitter @AmiraElghawaby.
October was Arteriovenous Malformation (AVM) Awareness Month. According to the Toronto Brain Vascular Malformation Study Group: "An AVM is a tangle of abnormal and poorly formed blood vessels (arteries and veins). They have a higher rate of bleeding than normal vessels. AVMs can occur anywhere in the body. Brain AVMs are of special concern because of the damage they cause when they bleed. They are very rare and occur in less than 1% of the general population."
The risk of bleeding with AVM increases as a person ages. The typical age of discovery is between the ages of 20 to 40. Bleeding can often result in stroke, resulting in permanent disability and even death. There are treatments to reduce the risk of bleeding. The cause of AVM is unknown but it is believed to develop in utero and affects all races and genders.
Muslim Link took the opportunity to interview a young member of Ottawa's Muslim community Anne-Marie Lavallee, about her experience as someone with AVM in order to help our readers better understand a condition which, although rare, can have a serious impact on the lives of those who live with it.
Originally written in 2009 for Sisters Magazine, Muslim Link is republishing our Editorial Advisor Amira Elghawaby’s tribute to her mother Mona whose struggle with Multiple Sclerosis (MS) came to a peaceful end on March 3rd 2015. Mona Elghawaby had been living at the Bruyere Continuing Care since 1996.
Following the tragic killing of two Canadian soldiers in late October, flags at the Edmonton Islamic Academy (EIA) were flown at half-mast. Students joined fellow citizens in mourning the loss and the school principal offered special assemblies to discuss the Islamic perspective on such a tragedy. "We started from the Quranic verse which says that whoever kills one human being, [it is] as if they have killed all of mankind. This was a crime equivalent to the killing of the whole of mankind," recalled Principal Moussa Ouarou, who was formerly the principal at Ottawa's Abraar School.
“People spend a lot of time [planning for] the wedding; what kind of dress, what kind of food, what kind of decorations and so forth, but you know, life really begins after marriage,” explained Jawad Jafry, director of the film series Marriage Success aimed at providing Muslim Canadians with a much needed resource to cope with the challenges and opportunities that marriage brings. Co-produced by Toronto-based Imam Hamid Slimi, the films can be found on the innovative marriagesuccess.ca website.
Zarqa Nawaz is probably the funniest Canadian Muslim woman in the country.
Even her Skype ID is quirky, naming a part of her foot. “Don’t ask!” she writes in an email, no doubt with a chuckle. Nawaz, the creator of the hit series Little Mosque on the Prairie, is currently promoting her new book which offers yet further glimpses into her (hilarious) experiences growing up in Canada.
For the third year in a row, Give 30 promises to bank on the giving spirit of Ramadan to inspire people of all faiths and backgrounds to help fight hunger.
The campaign, which includes Ottawa for the first time, is a national, grassroots initiative that has already raised $130,000 for food banks in several Canadian cities. This year, nine food banks in five cities have joined the campaign.
Toronto lawyer and social activist Ziyaad Mia is the founder of Give30.ca. He spoke with Muslim Link.