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Gaza: 97 Palestinians killed, 132 injured by Israeli bombings last 24 hours

Gaza: 118 Palestinians killed, 163 injured by Israeli bombings in last 24 hours

Gaza: 103 Palestinians killed, 142 injured by Israeli bombardment last 24 hours

Gaza: 107 Palestinians killed, 145 injured by Israeli bombings last 24 hours

Gaza: 127 Palestinians killed, 205 injured by Israeli bombing last 24 hours

Gaza: 83 Palestinians were killed, 125 injured by Israeli bombings in last 24 hours

Gaza: 112 Palestinians killed, 157 injured by Israeli bombing 15-16 Feb

Gaza: 87 Palestinians killed, 104 injured by Israeli bombardment 14-15 Feb

Gaza: 103 Palestinians killed, 145 injured by Israeli bombing 13-14 Feb

Gaza: 393 Palestinians killed, 525 injured by Israeli bombardment between 9-12 Feb

Gaza: 112 Palestinians killed, 173 injured by Israeli bombardments last 24 hours

Gaza: 123 Palestinians killed by Israeli bombardments between Tues-Wed

Pakistan: 3 bombings in Balochistan kill 29 on eve of polls

Gaza: 107 Palestinians killed, 143 injured by Israeli bombing Feb 5-6

Gaza: Israeli forces have killed 113 Palestinians, injured 205 in last 24 hours

Gaza: 127 Palestinians killed, 170 injured by Israeli bombings since Sat

Gaza: 112 Palestinians killed, 165 injured by Israeli bombing in past 24 hours

Gaza: 118 Palestinians killed, 190 injured by Israeli bombing 31 Jan-1Feb

Gaza: 150 Palestinians killed by Israeli bombings last 24 hours

Gaza: 150 Palestinians were killed, 313 wounded by Israeli attacks in past 24 hours

The Muslim News Awards for Excellence 2023 shortlist

21st Apr 2023
The Muslim News Awards for Excellence 2023 shortlist

Our readers nominated them, and our illustrious independent panel of judges reviewed, deliberated, and mused over the list. We proudly present the exemplary men, women, organisations, and initiatives shortlisted for The Muslim News Award for Excellence. These paradigms of good practice and excellence will be treated to a gala evening in the presence of their peers and other renowned guests in June, when the winners are announced for the fifteen coveted Awards for Excellence.

 

 

Eleanor Martin is a performance storyteller, stage director, and drama trainer with extensive experience in theatre, film, and television. Within a year of embracing Islam in 1996, she co-founded Khayaal Theatre Company in Luton, co-directing and performing the Company’s debut creation, the award-winning stage adaptation of the twelfth-century Persian poem ‘The Conference of the Birds’. She has since played a pivotal role in all other productions, including four years of touring a one-woman play, ‘Sun & Wind’. Eleanor has produced up to ten original storytelling adaptations per year since 2012, reaching eight to ten thousand live audiences annually and a million online. She has also worked meticulously as an educator, devising bespoke workshops for Goldsmith University, Shakespeare’s Globe, and The British Museum. Through Khayaal Drama Academy, she is laying the groundwork for ongoing drama education for disadvantaged Muslim children.

Grace & Poise Academy, established in 2019, is the world’s first no-music Muslim ballet school with a ballet-to-poetry syllabus. The company runs seven sites across the UK and aims to increase accessibility and create a community that leaves a positive impact. G&P welcomes all students, regardless of religion, providing inclusivity for diverse communities. G&P has partnered with many Islamic schools to support children’s development. Ballet exams help students gain UCAS points, raising their prospects. Additionally, the company aims to run teacher training programmes to attain professional ballet standards. G&P uses poetic storytelling and movement based on prophetic tales and positive morals to inspire children with Islam. Furthermore, G&P provides a safe space for women to maintain their physical and mental health and build a sense of community.

Salman Farsi is a branding and PR consultant, designer, web developer, and art director. His first projects included design and PR work for the Islam Expo (2006 and 2008). He was appointed Media and Communications Officer for the East London Mosque and London Muslim Centre in 2010, where he confronted Islamophobia and far-right protests. Since 2011, he played a key role in publishing the Muslim Council of Britain’s reports following the 2011 and 2021 Censuses. Between 2017 and 2020, he was a national press officer at the Labour Party and its acting head of regional media, serving both the Rt. Hon. Jeremy Corbyn and Sir Keir Starmer. He has received recognition for his public service work. He is currently head of communications for Quench, a tech start-up, as well as the director and founder of Cosmosphere, a strategic business consulting firm.

 

Reverend Prebendary Alan Green joined St. John’s in Tower Hamlets in 1998. In 2010, he was made a prebendary of St. Paul’s Cathedral in recognition of his interfaith work and encouragement of the arts. After the 7/7 bombings, he organised with the Bishop of Stepney to issue a joint statement condemning the attack. In solidarity with the East London Mosque, he formed the United East End to challenge far-right groups. In 2011, Alan led an interfaith delegation to Bosnia and Herzegovina to witness atrocities committed against Muslims. He later established the No Place for Hate platform to create a space to report hate crimes. Alan has chaired and worked with the Tower Hamlets Inter Faith Forum for sixteen years, bringing people of all and no faiths together to work in harmony. He was integral in trying to keep places of faith open during the pandemic.

Iain Stewart, executive director of the Edinburgh Interfaith Association, has been a prominent figure in the Scottish interfaith community for several years. He collaborated closely with Muslim community groups throughout Scotland to enhance their representation and participation at different structural levels. He has denounced hatred and intolerance and actively worked to reduce Islamophobia in Scotland. Iain has ensured that Muslim communities can participate in discussions about integration, addressing inequality, and bringing communities together. He was instrumental in involving Muslim voices in discussions across City Hall, the health authorities, and the refugee council, ensuring support for refugees settling in Scotland. His networking skills have allowed him to direct Muslim community groups and individuals to different government grants, initiatives, and ventures. Iain’s work with, and for, Scotland’s Muslim community is undeniable.

Remembering Srebrenica (RS) is an awareness-raising charity specialising in educating people across the UK about the 1995 Bosnian genocide. Founded in 2013, the initiative has, to date, edified more than 180,000 young people on what has been dubbed “the worst atrocity on European soil since World War II.” The charity is the sole-organiser of the annual Srebrenica Memorial Week, which culminates on Srebrenica Memorial Day on July 11. RS has held memorial community action events and activities with schools, local authorities, police forces, community centres, and places of worship. In addition, it has worked with commercial, public, and third-sector organisations. RS works with 1,450 community champions, eight regional boards in England, and three country boards in Northern Ireland, Wales, and Scotland to ensure that the victims of the genocide are remembered, and lessons are learned from the atrocity.

 

Maryam Fathimah Jazeem is a multi-award-winning Qur’an reciter, public speaker, social media activist, and “kidpreneur”. She enjoys spreading Islam to people of all ages in a fun and interactive way through social media. She has been widely recognised by well-known Islamic scholars, notably Imam Wisam Sharieff. Her many accolades include Reading Challenge Champion Medals at ages 2 and 3 from The Reading Agency UK in collaboration with Guinness World Records, as well as the Verbal Commendation Award at age 8 at the 41st International Model United Nations conference in 2021. Maryam has participated in and won many Qur’an competitions, including the National Qira’ah Competition by Islam Channel TV in 2021, and was crowned ‘Best Qur’an Reciter’ in the UK. In 2022, her achievements were recognised through the Milton Keynes Mayor Award as well as the TruLittle Samaritan Award from the Cause 4 Children Foundation.

Rubi Iqbal, 12, who is deaf with speech and uses British Sign Language, strives to bridge the gap between the deaf Asian community and its hearing counterpart. She also aspires to become a TV presenter to inspire other young deaf people. Rubi introduced the Ninja Express programme live on CBBC Saturday Mash-Up with TV presenters Harpz Kaur and Joe Tasker. Rubi has also been involved in an Eid Mubrark music video for the SkyKid advert and was also selected as a Changemaker for last year’s Children’s Media Conference. Rubi is keen to aim high and break down the glass ceiling, hoping for a career in media, beauty, the arts, and fashion. Rubi loves singing and signing music.

Thalia S. A. is a 12-year-old author and illustrator, inspired by her family of writers. She published and illustrated her book, ‘Mermaid Lagoon,’ about sea life conservation and global warming at age 10. It received recognition from the Malaysian newspaper New Straits Times, and she appeared on the Islam Channel. She was invited to an online session with the Turtle Conservation Society of Malaysia. Her book has been placed in the Langkawi Royal Customs Gallery in Malaysia. She won the Key Stage 2 short story and poem categories at the Young Writers Muslim Awards 2022 for her poem ‘I’m Still Waiting’ and story ‘Unpredictable’ Thalia recently completed a voice-over project for the Usborne Foundation. She and her brother also won first place in a short video contest by Muslim Kids TV last year.

 

London’s Community Kitchen (LCK) operates in multiple boroughs, including Brent, Harrow, and Enfield. Its founder, Taz Khan, has collaborated with several high-profile stakeholders to tackle food poverty, for which he received an MBE. The main principle is for the LCK “to look and feel like London feels.” Two thousand people receive free hot meals and drinks weekly through the LCK. It aims to provide jobs and opportunities for locals. It collaborates with community groups by holding cooking classes. Most recently, Taz has been critical in setting up an LCK hub at the Central Mosque of Brent in Willesden Green on Fridays, supplying hundreds of people affected by the cost-of-living crisis. During the pandemic, the kitchen served 450 high-risk families and established a regular supply chain with the Felix Project and City Harvest.

Rahma Elmi is committed to developing and implementing support networks for some of the most vulnerable Muslim women in the UK— recent immigrants and refugees, including hundreds of women and families. Rahma has devoted her time to assisting vulnerable groups, particularly through her role as a principal project manager at the Education and Skills and Development Group, a non-profit dedicated to enhancing underprivileged children’s educational experience. Rahma’s primary focus is on four areas: supplementary schooling, counselling families, support for children with special education needs (SEN), and skilling women of Syrian, Afghan, Middle Eastern, and Somali heritage for employability. She is also a volunteer school governor at Havelock Primary School, Southall, where she decolonised the curriculum.

Nisar Bawany is a serial volunteer in Wandsworth, described by colleagues as the local community’s engine, aiding those in need while simultaneously fostering community cohesion. Nisar has been on the management committee of the Balham Mosque and Tooting Islamic Centre for more than 25 years. He has been a school governor at the Al Rissalah Trust for a similar length of time. He is also active within the Balham & Tooting Community Association, which promotes collaborations between different faith groups and institutions such as the Metropolitan Police and the London Fire Brigade. He also helped establish the Community Policing Contact Centre, which saw a police officer stationed at the Balham Mosque. The group has been recognised by the Home Office and many other police forces.

 

Mohammed Kozbar has chaired Finsbury Park Mosque since 2005. He has helped create a vibrant mosque as well as servie non-faith needs. Mohammed has taken the mosque into the Inter Faith Network, representing Muslims at the Islington Faiths Forum. It became the first mosque to host a Visit My Mosque Open Day. The mosque also held a street iftar and hosted an interfaith commemoration of Srebrenica. It has received the Visible Quality Mark from Community Matters. Following a terrorist attack outside the mosque, Mohammed engaged with government officials, including Prime Minister, Theresa May, to identify policies to avoid a future attack. Additionally, Mohammed sits on the diversity panel of ITV London News. He is a member of the Police Islington Advisory Group, and the Crown Prosecution Service London Scrutiny and Involvement Panel.

Imam Monawar Hussain, MBE, DL FRSA, read theology at the University of Oxford, holds a master’s degree in Abrahamic religions from the University of London, and trained as an imam at the Muslim College in Ealing. He serves as an advisor to several national charities, including the Three Faiths Forum and the NSPCC National Advisory Group on safeguarding Muslim children. He is an honorary research fellow at the University of Birmingham and a chaplain at Eton College and the Oxford University Hospitals Trust. He founded The Oxford Foundation, designed to tackle Muslim integration. It promotes religious and racial harmony and healthy relations among different faiths and racial groups. He was recently awarded an MBE for his services to interfaith relations and the Sternberg Interfaith Gold Medallion in 2020 for his exceptional contribution to understanding between faiths across the world.

The Ramadan Tent Project (RTP) is an award-winning charity that brings communities together during Ramadan. It aims to create spaces of dialogue, mutual understanding, and belonging to build bridges between people of all faiths and no faith. RTP organises Open Iftar, the UK’s largest annual community Ramadan event, which has to date, connected over 500,000 people. It features inspirational guest speakers at various locations around the UK (including Wembley Stadium and Cambridge Central Mosque). Ramadan 2023 marks a decade since its inception. In 2022, it reached over 350 million people globally, and the Trafalgar Square event made history, hosting Western Europe’s largest open Iftar event. During the pandemic, the Open Iftar hosted a virtual 24-hour event, reaching six continents. RTP’s vision is a world where everyone lives in harmony.

 

Professor Hassan Abdalla has achieved high-profile academic roles such as Provost of the University of East London and Executive Dean, winning awards nationally and internationally. He has been instrumental in the development of the higher education sector in the UK, the UAE, Europe, and Egypt. He led major global collaborations between universities in the UK and other Muslim countries. He is currently a member of the Egyptian Ministerial Board for developing the higher education strategy for 2032 and has led the ministerial review and development of the creative industry in the UAE. Professor Abdalla is an expert in various fields, including innovation and sustainable development. He sits on the board of governors for UTC LDE, which offers highly specialised education to thousands of Muslim students. He is currently coordinating HRH’s visit to UEL for the Royal Dock Centre opening.

Iqra Academy (rated Outstanding by Ofsted) is an independent Cambridgeshire-based girls’ secondary school with an Islamic ethos. It is managed by the Peterborough Muslim Education Trust and funded by student fees and donations. The school’s vision is to instil students with a sense of social and religious duty to become valued members of society. In addition to collaborating with the Muslim Council of Peterborough and the Association of Muslim Schools, Iqra’s students participated in the Peace and Tolerance event at Peterborough Cathedral and the Interfaith event at the Town Hall. It is one of the highest-performing girls’ schools in the country. In 2022, 100% of students went on to study for further education. It excels in sports, with its all-conquering football team reaching their sixth consecutive Association of Muslim Schools national final in 2022.

The Privacy Pros Academy (PPA) equips privacy professionals with the competence, credibility, and confidence they need to empower businesses to adopt honest privacy practices. PPA is an official training partner of the International Association of Privacy Professionals. It won the 2022 Global Choice Award for Best Data Training Provider. Additionally, its founder, Jamal Ahmed, was a finalist for the prestigious Picasso Privacy Awards. Mentees are granted access to the Privacy Pros community, where they can network with globally esteemed privacy experts — an invaluable resource. This year, the Academy has gifted over £100,000 in scholarships to Indian and African mentees. And the free Privacy Pros podcast (reaching over one hundred countries) offers key knowledge and features from industry leaders. Jamal’s book, ‘The Ultimate Easy Peasy Guide to GDPR,’ offers a concise and straightforward guide to GDPR and has become a highly sought-after resource.

 

Professor Ghulam Nabi, a leading urological consultant in robotic surgery, established laparoscopic and robotic radical prostatectomy services for the NHS. He is the clinical director of the Centre for Medical Engineering and Technology at the University of Dundee, where he is ‘personal chair’ in surgical uro-oncology and head of the imaging sciences and technology research division. Professor Nabi’s accolades are vast and include a visiting professorship at Memorial Sloan Kettering and the James IV Fellowship award from the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh. For eight years he was a speciality advisor to that group. He has published over 250 papers and is editor-in-chief of the Scottish Medical Journal. He founded the BAME staff network at Ninewells Hospital in Dundee, and in 2022, the University of Dundee was awarded the Race Equality Charter Bronze Mark.

Dr Gulam Bahadur is a consultant clinical scientist and head of fertility labs at two major London NHS hospitals. His focus is on male, and cancer-related infertility patients. He participated in the development of new laboratories to meet EU tissue standards. He translates the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority’s requirements and inspections into practice. Dr Bahadur’s research has helped thousands improve clinical practice and success rates in fertility treatments. He supports less invasive treatments (IUI) and demonstrates his case for its place alongside IVF by publishing evidence in numerous studies. His research has indirectly aided many Muslim couples hesitant to undergo more invasive treatments. IUI is cheaper than IVF, and Dr Bahadur has been advocating this for those who cannot afford IVF.

Yama Mujadidi is a clinical trialist, IT and development lead at the University of Oxford, and a member of the Oxford Vaccine Group, which played a critical role in the development of the Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine. His responsibilities include leading the design and implementation of the data infrastructure for vaccine trials in the UK and abroad and working on regulatory submissions. Yama has undertaken strategic planning and oversight of the Oxford Vaccine Group’s data infrastructure to help deliver on the group’s research requirements. He consistently contributes to scientific research and has co-produced reports and publications for journals. He has led the design and implementation of the data infrastructure for clinical trials assessing other vaccine efficacy and safety. Yama has set up several ventures in Afghanistan, including Oxus Academy, which provides decentralised education services.

 

Farzana Rahman launched The Desi Doll Company (TDDC) 14 years ago. Having searched for Islamically educational toys for her children, she spotted a gap in the market and decided to create her own. Her business is thriving, with the interactive Aamina and Yousuf dolls selling in over thirty countries. Farzana recognised that children could be taught Qur’anic chapters, Islamic etiquette, and a solid religious foundation through play. Her high-quality toys have been the first to market innovative Islamic ideas, earning her the accolade of being a pioneer in her industry. Farzana intends to expand her international operations after listing toys in Asda and Morrisons. TDDC is bringing out the My Little Muslim Friends line that aims to promote respect and understanding amongst Muslim children and their peers, encouraging friendship and faith.

Muzz (formerly Muzmatch) is the biggest Muslim dating app in the world, with over six million members and over 400,000 successes. Its founder and CEO, Shahzad Younas, left investment banking to focus on building a high-quality app to help Muslims globally find their marriage partner. Backed by $9 million in investment from Silicon Valley and global investors and headquartered in London, Muzz is transforming how Muslims meet and marry. During the COVID-19 pandemic, Muzz became the first leading religious dating platform to release a free in-app video calling feature following a survey that found that 83% of users said they were struggling to find serious relationships because of lockdowns. In 2022, following the rebranding and launch of the Muzz app, the app featured video and voice profiles—a first in the Muslim space.

Nazmina “Naz” Panju holds three degrees, including one from Cambridge University, and is a director of global education consultancy BCIE Ltd. With operations in over eleven countries, her company annually contributes £100 million to the UK economy and educates over 10,000 students from developing nations. Her accomplishments are remarkable given her humble upbringing, with limited educational opportunities. At age 19, she gathered £35,000 from community loans, scholarships, and crowdfunding to pay for her international fees to study in the UK. She now works with universities to provide scholarships to students from developing countries. She is currently working with an organisation in Africa to set up a merit-based scholarship for Muslim girls to study abroad. Naz is on the list of Conservative Party parliamentary candidates. She lobbies the government through several organisations on education-related policy matters.

 

Dr Mahamed Hashi delivers numerous strategies to provide platforms and support for young people and the most vulnerable, as showcased by his co-founding of the Brixton Soup Kitchen in 2013 and the founding of the New Beginnings Youth Provision. He has been part of numerous advisory groups, including the Pan London Community Monitoring Network for Stop and Search, the Mayor of London’s Child Obesity Task Force, and the London Muslim Community Forum. In 2018, Mahamed was elected as a local councillor for Stockwell in Lambeth, becoming the borough’s first Somali-born official. He was promoted to cabinet member for sustainable transportation, the environment, and clean air in 2021, and he is now a cabinet member for safer communities. He has been recognised through several awards, including the Back2Black Inspirational Award (2015) and Bloomberg’s Change Maker List (2018).

Councillor Naser Abby of the London Borough of Hillingdon challenges Muslim stereotypes and stigma in this conservative area. He has many roles, including that of an independent human rights researcher, a member of the Labour Party’s Uxbridge and South Ruislip CLP Executive Committee, and Governor at St. Matthew’s. Naser was a victim of a knife crime, in which he was attacked by a racist mob in 2001, sustaining twelve knife wounds and miraculously surviving. He ran a successful campaign to stop the council from demolishing Yiewsley Library while taking away the green belt and an old swimming pool for the erection of luxury flats. Naser also worked with faith communities and businesses in Hillingdon to donate and come out for litter picking. In the summer, he collaborated with KFC to feed sixty rough sleepers.

Raheel Mohammed is the director and founder of Maslaha, which creates long-term interventions to tackle inequalities at all levels. Maslaha won the Innovation Mindset Challenge, a global competition set by the Rockefeller Foundation and Columbia University. Raheel was also named one of ‘Britain’s 50 New Radicals’ by the Observer and Nesta and was awarded the CRE Race in the Media award. Commissioned by the British Council, he has created two multi-media exhibitions that have travelled the world. Raheel, who currently serves on the Ministry of Justice advisory board, examining the disproportionate number of young Muslims in the criminal justice system, has been invited to testify before several parliamentary select committees, including Home Affairs, Justice, and Women and Equalities. He has spoken at conferences globally, including at the World Islamic Economic Forum and the New York Department of Education.

 

The British Islamic Medical Association (BIMA) is an organisation of over five thousand Muslim healthcare professionals working together with the mission to “Unite, Inspire, Serve.” BIMA spearheads successful health initiatives for Muslim communities in the UK. Naturally, the last few years focus has been on COVID-19 and the response to the unique challenges and disproportionate impact faced by Muslim communities. Initiatives that BIMA has delivered include “Lifesavers,” where a day is spent in local communities teaching basic life support, as well as “Operation Vaccination,” which addresses the low uptake of the annual flu vaccination. BIMA also hosts an annual conference for members and volunteers to network and engage in professional development. These efforts have led to BIMA being invited to participate in events such as the G7 vaccine summit and the All-Parliamentary Health Group discussions.

Dr Kiran Nijabat is a consultant child and adolescent psychiatrist and the founder and director of Family Wellness Practice, delivering bespoke mental health training and counselling to over 5,000 people. She provides training through workshops and CPD-accredited courses in the UK, Pakistan, and the Middle East. In 2019, she delivered training on behalf of the WHO Mind the Gap programme. She has been invited to speak on Islamic TV channels about mental health in the Muslim community and has delivered a series of lectures on parenting at various mosques. She has also trained over twenty-five imams on mental health problem identification and management. Dr Kiran was recently invited to Parliament by the British Dyslexia Association to discuss the effects of dyslexia on children’s mental health, poor outcomes in adulthood, and the criminal justice system.

Physicians Across Continents (PAC), founded 22 years ago, is a Muslim medical NGO whose work spans forty-two countries and has reached 1.5 million beneficiaries to date. PAC provides lifesaving and life-changing surgeries for free for Muslims and non-Muslims, trains medical professionals, and has set up medical camps in Pakistan during the recent floods. They also build clinics and infrastructure to allow host countries to develop. PAC has a UK-based programme – My Mosque Clinic, which takes medical professionals to mosques to do free health check-ups across the country during Friday prayers. It also involves workshops in healthy cooking with a chef, fitness instructors, and mental wellbeing coaches at the community level. PAC has trained more than 6,000 doctors through medical webinars and telemedicine to put patients in front of doctors.

 

Faima Bakar is a lifestyle reporter for Inside Housing, the i and the Metro who has centred faith in her work. During her time at Huffington Post, Faima ran a series about celebrating Muslim traditions, particularly during Ramadan and Eid, which offered a positive portrayal of Muslims and combated the misunderstandings around Islam that other sections of the media more often portray. Faima also authored in-depth articles on the discrimination that Muslim women suffer during labour and pregnancy. She has also looked more broadly at how racism appears in society. She found that areas, where minorities live in the US and UK, have fewer outdoor public spaces and higher levels of pollution. She has also highlighted facts following mistruths by the tabloid press, including writing about how grooming gangs are not a “Muslim problem,” something the Home Office admitted a few months after her reporting.

Saleyha Ahsan, a physician, presenter, and journalist, has worked as a humanitarian doctor abroad, an A&E doctor in the UK, and presented many TV and radio programmes. She was the first British Muslim woman to attend the integrated male and female officer commissioning course at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst. She achieved the rank of captain in the British Army and completed three years in the Royal Army Medical Corps. She worked as a humanitarian doctor in Libya during the Arab Spring in 2011 and in Syria in 2013. In 2008, her short film My Mother’s Daughter won Best European Film at the Pangea Day film festival in LA. Saleyha filmed her experiences during the pandemic for a Channel 4 programme. She is a member of COVID-19 Bereaved Families for Justice, a group that advocates for a public inquiry into the UK’s pandemic response.

Professor Yasmin Alibhai-Brown, MBE, a renowned journalist for over 35 years, has been widely published in the national and international press, including The Independent, The Observer, and The New York Times, to name a few. She writes regular columns for the i, International Business Times, and The New European. Her writing has contributed to changing perceptions of Muslims. Yasmin’s accomplishments include numerous awards for her ability to challenge readers’ and students’ perceptions. An enthusiastic champion for minority groups’ rights, she is a founding member of British Muslims for Secular Democracy and has published several acclaimed books on race, identity, and social mobility. She became the first ethnic minority section editor of a national publication, at New Society and the New Statesman.

 

Evolve: The Cycling Network for Muslim Women encourages Muslim women to embrace cycling as a sport by providing safe spaces for women. The network launched in 2020 in Greater London and Hertfordshire and has grown to three hundred women. For women who choose to cover, Evolve designed their own breathable and modest jersey with cycling amenities. Evolve provides training led by British Cycling qualified coaches. Their partnership with Harrow Cycle Hub has enabled them to train over one hundred women. Their courses progress to encourage women into long-distance sportives. Since 2020, Evolve has organised many rides, including sportives from London to Windsor, and the first-ever Muslim women’s time trial. Evolve’s Go-Ride Club was established to teach core cycling skills to children. Evolve’s charity work is vast and includes a partnership with the Lady Fatemah Charitable Trust.

Fouzia Sultana is the director of sports at Peterborough-based Iqra Academy, an independent girls’ secondary school in an area where sports access is difficult. Fouzia offers free weekly fitness sessions at the local community centre and, under the local authority, provides female badminton sessions across the city. Fouzia also runs the school’s Duke of Edinburgh Awards programme and the Combined Cadet Force, the first Muslim girls’ school in the country to do so. Iqra Academy has achieved many sporting accolades, including their fifth national title as the Association of Muslim Schools National Football Champions in 2021. Additionally, the school’s cricket team competes nationally, with several members achieving the English Cricket Board’s ‘Young Leaders Award,’ presented at Lord’s Cricket Ground. Fouzia is currently setting up a girls’ football academy at a school in East Jerusalem, Palestine.

Sajid Hussain, from Birmingham, is the finance and operations director at British Judo and volunteers as the finance director and trustee of British Blind Sport, as well as a trustee and chair of the Muslim Sports Foundation (MSF). Sajid formed the MSF to address sports, mental health, and wellbeing in the Muslim community. MSF’s community sports clubs, set up in schools, mosques, madrassas committed to creating sustainable inclusion across the nation. Through Sport England’s TIF (Tackling Inequalities Fund), the MSF has supported sixty projects. Of the sixty projects, thirty have been or are currently being delivered under the MSF’s Ansar delivery arm, and the remaining thirty projects have been given to private delivery partners.

Fizza Khan, who started writing poetry at 9 years old, has published several poems with the Young Writers. At fourteen, she compiled her poetry revolving around the philosophy of God, nature, and motherhood and published the book ‘My Perspective.’ She is currently working on a novel called ‘The Unsolved Case.’ She enjoys performing her poetry as spoken word; in the 2020 lockdowns, she performed for her school, which led to her winning the Poetry by Heart competition. She has also performed a poem about the hijab on ITV’s Britain’s Got Talent. Faith Associates selected Fizza as a Digital Safety Ambassador for her school to prevent cyberbullying in cooperation with Google and the Mayor of London. Cricket is another passion of hers; she plays for Thornton Heath Cricket Club that was established by the Chance to Shine programme, which represents minority groups through street cricket.

Ubaid Husain, from Leeds, began Muay Thai at the age of eight and quickly established himself in the ring, winning over sixty fights with only two losses, to date. He represented Team GB at the world championships in Turkey, where he clinched gold. He also competed and won a gold medal at the European Championships in Lithuania, and currently holds the world number one rank in his age-weight category. In his spare time, Ubaid helps young people participate in gyms and youth camps for combat sports, self-defence, and confidence-building. Ubaid does a lot of charity challenges; most recently, he sparred continuously for one hour and raised over £21,000 for Leeds-based charities. He played a significant role in providing financial support at Christmas in the campaign ‘Every Child Matters’ for Helping Aid Foodbank.

Dr Mya-Rose Craig is a 20-year-old British-Bangladeshi ornithologist, environmentalist, and human rights activist committed to stopping biodiversity loss and halting climate change. She works to support minority rights, ensuring the nature conservation and environmental sectors are ethnically diverse. Growing up facing racism and Islamophobia, she founded Black2Nature in 2016, a charity that organises nature camps and events for visible minority ethnic children. She works to increase minority access to nature and lobbies environmental organisations to become more diverse. Her 2021 book, ‘We Have a Dream,’ talks of the activism of thirty young global environmentalists. She shared a stage with Sir David Attenborough and Greta Thunberg at COP 26 to lobby world leaders to cut emissions faster. She has appeared on many programmes, including Blue Peter and Newsround. In 2020, Mya-Rose became the youngest Brit to receive an honorary doctorate after receiving a doctor of science degree from the University of Bristol aged just seventeen.

 

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Over 120 people attended a landmark conference on the media reporting of Islam and Muslims. It was held jointly by The Muslim News and Society of Editors in London on September 15.

The Muslim News Awards for Excellence 2015 was held on March in London to acknowledge British Muslim and non-Muslim contributions to the society.

The Muslim News Awards for Excellence 2015 was held on March in London to acknowledge British Muslim and non-Muslim contributions to the society.

The Muslim News Awards for Excellence event is to acknowledge British Muslim and non-Muslim contributions to society. Over 850 people from diverse background, Muslim and non-Muslim, attended the gala dinner.

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