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Meet the Team

The MEND vision has brought together people from all walks of life and disciplines. We are a team of entrepreneurs, doctors, policy analysts, grass-roots activists, Muslims and non-Muslims all bound by the ethos of a zero-tolerance policy towards anti-Muslim hatred. Our staff are the backbone of the organisation and are detailed below.

Regional Managers at Mend

Dr Shazad Amin - CEO

Dr Shazad Amin is Chief Executive of Muslim Engagement & Development

He recently retired as a NHS Consultant in Adult Psychiatry based in Manchester. He works as a Court Expert Witness, mainly in the area of Clinical Negligence. He is also a Chair of the Medical Practitioners Tribunal Service, which makes decisions about a doctors’ fitness to practise. He is a Care Quality Commission Specialist Advisor.

He is also an aspiring actor, and enrolled as a student in a local School of Acting. He is married with three children and does not support Manchester United.

Aman Ali – Joint-Head of Community Development & Engagement

Aman currently is undertaking his master’s studies at UCL’s institute of education, having initially graduated from Queen Mary University with a Bsc in Biology with Psychology. Aman started his journey in MEND initially as a volunteer before becoming mend's London Regional Manager between 2015-2017.

He has many years of experience working with various Muslim youth organisations, having started out as a Muslim youth worker at the age of 17. He then moved onto various roles including being previously Head of Media at FOSIS, teaching science at secondary level and volunteering with the Muslim Youth Network.

Azhar Qayum - Joint-Head of Community Development & Engagement

Azhar Qayum graduated with a LLB honours in Law from the University of Coventry in 2001. After a brief career in law he went in to business and has run various businesses over the past seventeen years. He has been a community organiser and activist for more than twenty years, starting whilst still at school. Azhar has volunteered at various levels with Muslim student and community associations, charities and local masajid. For the last few years he has also run a successful Arabic language foundation course.

Amirah Mulla - North West Regional Manager

Amirah graduated with a BSc in Biomedical Sciences from the University of Manchester before returning to complete an MA in Humanitarianism and Conflict Response. During this time, she was part of the administration committee for the Young People in Humanitarianism Conference and also completed an internship with a third party monitoring and evaluation organization in Turkey.
Amirah has also managed a behavioural school and taught science at high school level. This involved endless patience and the overuse of phrases like ‘I’m not mad, just disappointed’.

She is currently happy to admit that she supports Manchester United.

Iqra Zulfiqar - Administrative Assistant to North West Regional Manager

Iqra is currently a law student at the University of Manchester. She wants to pursue a career in human rights. She has volunteered for different organisations, both in the UK and Italy.

She is a huge cricket fan and a horror and marvel movies lover.

Mohammed Abubakar Saleem – Yorkshire & Humber Regional Manager

Abubakar has successfully completed his Alimiyyah degree having studied in the UK and South Africa. He has also memorised the Qur'an and mastered the seven styles of recitation. Abubakar served as an Imam in Yorkshire for four years before leaving his post to focus on community development. He is the founder and chairman of Community First, and organisation in Yorkshire working on four key areas; education, interfaith, outreach and youth. Abubakar is also a television presenter for Iqra TV and a trustee of a local authority high school in Yorkshire. Abubakar is passionate about developing the British community to build a better brighter future for everyone. In his free time he loves watching the Ertugrul and Osman dramas.

Azba Wahid - Yorkshire & Humber Regional Manager

Azba graduated with a BA Honours in Comparative Literature from King’s College London and is now pursuing an MA in Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies at the University of Leeds, where she hopes to pursue her research interests in Islamophobia and the role of women in Islam. Through her activism at university, she realised that Islamophobia was the issue she wanted to focus on. Aside from her work at MEND, Azba is interested in South Asian literature and history, good coffee, and travelling – in line with her academic interests, she hopes to travel to the Middle East in the following years. Her time is divided between MEND and her commitment to bad Pakistani TV dramas.

Ruby Begum - Midlands Regional Manager

Ruby graduated with a BA Honours and PGCE Diploma in Education and Training at Manchester Metropolitan University and University of Huddersfield whilst working fulltime as an Equality and Diversity specialist in the Community and Education Sector. She formerly worked as an Teacher, Equality and Diversity and Project Coordinator and had developed the ‘Speak Up Stand Up Campaign’. She has been instrumental in developing initiatives, campaigns and educational programmes to tackle all forms of hate, discrimination and sexual violence for both Muslim and non-muslim communities. She also dedicates her free time to support Islamic Charities and mentoring refugees, which led her passion to engage, educate and empower BAME communities to challenge and change their narratives. She also travelled to the Brussels (UN) as a representative for the Education and Culture Committee to advocate voices for minorities and Poland with colleagues at University of Manchester to further understanding of the Jewish Holocaust and what lessons we can take to tackle Islamophobia today.

Ruby describes herself as an ambivert, a person who loves to socialise but also enjoys her downtime, to self-reflect and enjoy the simple things in life, like travel, food and family.

Isma Safiyya - Administrative Assistant to Midlands Regional Manager

Isma Safiyya graduated with a BA Honours in Health and Social Welfare from Teesside University in 2016. She was formerly a Nursery Practitioner working in various Nurseries throughout Birmingham. Isma has also volunteered at various Islamic Schools teaching Muslim students the teachings of Islam and helping them enunciate their Arabic language in order to recite the Qur’an correctly and confidently.

Isma enjoys eating healthy, maintaining her health by visiting the gym on a regular basis, she also loves cooking, baking, reading and spending time with her loved ones.

Sahar Al-Faifi - South Wales & West England Regional Manager

Sahar Al-Faifi is the assistant general secretary of the Muslim Council of Wales (MCW), former Chair of FOSIS Wales and a community organiser for Citizen UK Wales. Sahar is a graduate from Cardiff University in Genetics; MSc in Biomedical Science and previously worked as a molecular geneticist at the NHS.

Sophia Ali - Administrative Assistant to South Wales & West Regional Manager

Mohammad Shoaib - London Regional Manager

Mohammad Shoaib is a graduate from the University of Essex receiving a BA Hons in Politics, Philosophy and Economics and is currently undertaking an MRes in Public Policy at Queen Mary’s University. Shoaib was formerly the Fundraising Officer at the charity Muntada Aid and President of Essex Islamic Society. During his time at university he was involved in encouraging wider participation of Muslim students on campus and hopes to continue this with communities in London whilst working at MEND. Shoaib aims to further his career in politics by venturing into policy analysis once he completes his postgraduate studies.

Amira Rowles - London Regional Manager

Amira graduated with a First Class LLB Honours in Law before proceeding to qualify as a Solicitor. Whilst at university and after graduating Amira always remained active in her local Islamic Society working on dawah and charity projects aiming to overcome the Islamophobic narrative that sadly exists. After enjoying a brief career in law in the UK, she moved to Morocco where she used her legal skills to campaign for women’s rights at both local and national level. Having now returned to the UK, Amira is now focusing her efforts on fighting Islamophobia and is relishing her opportunity to do so through MEND.

Mubash-Sharah Khan - Administrative Assistant to London Regional Managers

Mubash-sharah is a graduate in English Literature who is currently doing her Masters in Cultural and Critical Studies from the University of Westminster. Mubash-sharah has been involved with Islamic Organisations from a young age and is currently the lead for a female Muslim Youth organisation. She is also a National Council Member for MCB.
In her spare time Mubash-sharah enjoys writing and eating.

Isobel Ingham-Barrow - Head of Policy & Research

Isobel received her BA (Hons) in Arabic and Middle Eastern Studies with Persian, an MA in Middle East and Islamic Studies, and an MRes in Middle East Studies from the University of Exeter. Alongside her work with MEND, she lectures at the University of Exeter and is a postgraduate researcher in Area and Development Studies at the Institute of Arab and Islamic Studies. Her PhD research project is an exploration of masculinity within British Muslim communities.

Omar Begg - Senior Policy Analyst

Omar received an LLB in Law from Sussex University, and an MSc in Criminal Justice Policy from the London School of Economics. He held several elected leadership positions while studying, and represented his university in Rugby and MMA.

Before MEND, Omar worked at a specialist corporate communication firm, and previously managed policy and public affairs for a Think Tank.

In his spare time Omar enjoys reading about the criminal justice system, civil rights, Islamic history, and British-Muslim experiences. He also enjoys talking about his skills in the kitchen more than he actually makes anything in it.

Ruqaiyah Amin - Junior Researcher

Ruqaiyah is a graduate from the University of Manchester in Arabic and Spanish and is currently undertaking a Masters in Near and Middle Eastern Studies at SOAS. Ruqaiyah has engaged in various volunteer roles including teaching English abroad and was former Vice Chair of FOSIS North. As exemplified by her degree choices, her interests lie in all things Middle Eastern but she is also a passionate foodie, loves travelling and dabbles in photography in her spare time.

Tareq Miah - Junior Researcher

Tareq graduated with a BA (Hons) in Politics, Philosophy and Economics from Goldsmiths University of London. During his time at university, he was actively involved in empowering the widening participation of BME students through delivering various student life talks, taking part in student-led panels advising teachers on how to prepare BME students for university better as well as helping prospective students write their personal statements. An aspiring Journalist and Policy Analyst, Tareq seeks to undertake a Masters in Counter Terrorism/Security studies starting in September 2020 in support of his career goals.

In his spare time, he enjoys playing all kinds of sports, studying the relationship between art and violence, sectarian conflicts, Western Philosophy, and going on long relaxing drives while listening to the Quran.

Zeeshan Ali - Media & Policy Analyst

Zeeshan holds a first-class degree in MSci Pharmacology from University College London. During his Master’s year, he was elected UK National Policy Officer of a student-led NGO, Universities Allied for Essential Medicines, which prompted him to pursue a career in policy analysis. He is passionate about empowering members of the community and tackling discriminatory narratives and policies within the socio-political field. Other causes of interest include access to medicines. In his spare time, he enjoys reading, hiking, dancing; and has undertaken various charity-based activities including skydiving.

Thania Mukith - Education Resource Officer

Thania is an experienced educator, a sociology graduate and former sports ambassador for an international sports organisation. She has been an active community member, organising several charitable events and campaigns against worldly injustices. Being a project co-ordinator for a creative arts charity, Thania has delivered workshops to young people in Palestine and has also lead discussions on religious tolerance and sport in the USA. She now manages her own catering business whilst running around after her toddler.

Vacant - Administrative Assistant to Policy & Research Team

Faiza Mukith – IRU Head of Legal

Faiza is a qualified lawyer with expertise in pro bono and employment law. She graduated from SOAS and completed her Legal Practice Course and Diploma in Business and Administration at BBP Law school. She completed her training contract and qualified in an international commercial law firm. Throughout her legal career, Faiza has been an active member of the law firm’s Muslim Networks, and Diversity and Multicultural alliances. She has completed the Advocates for International Development training course, and has worked for multiple legal advice centres – namely, North Kensington Law Centre in support of the Grenfell Tower disaster victims.

Faiza is currently studying Arabic part time at Arabica Institute. Faiza and her sisters have their own catering business on the side. She does not cook any of the food so as to prevent the business from failing.

Huda Osman - IRU Caseworker

Huda graduated with a First Class Bachelor’s degree in Criminology. During her time in university she grew a passion for study counter terrorism and has conducted research projects focusing on the PREVENT Duty. Throughout her university years Huda was heavily involved in the Islamic Society, actively leading on events such as Charity Week. She has continued her activism by joining various organisations, including Federation of Islamic Societies (FOSIS) and has also become a youth worker. She aims to further her career in Criminology by studying Counter- Terrorism at PhD level.

Outside of work and studies, Huda enjoys spending time with family and friends, reading and watching Ertugrul.

Umay Yeahia - IRU Caseworker and Administrative Support

Umay is a final year law student at SOAS and aspiring solicitor who wants to pursue a career in commercial law. She joined the Islamophobia Response Unit (IRU) to gain experience in employment law and develop an understanding of the deep systematic barriers Muslims face in the working world; and, build awareness in dealing with the pressing issues of islamophobia by providing legal aid.
Build on her studies, Umay is a private tutor in English Literature and Psychology; Senior Widening Participation Ambassador; and, a member of the Decolonising SOAS Working Group.

Outside of work and studies she enjoys learning about healthcare and wellbeing, healthy eating, attending the gym and hiking.

Vacant - Social Media Co-ordinator

Juwel Mahmud – Graphic & Web Designer

Juwel is an experienced graphic and web designer with over a decades worth of experience in working within his field. Prior to joining MEND, he delivered a project that was showcased at the Houses of Parliament and developed a website highlighting the work of NGO projects overseas.

Mohammad Chowdhury - Junior Graphics Designer

Mohammad is currently undertaking BSc in Marketing and Multimedia. He has several years of experience in the creative field, working for organisations like Ogilvy & Mather, Carver Haggard and Hammersmith & Fulham Borough of London. He was previously a freelance photographer, video editor and graphics designer as well as being a Creative Director for Eritrean Muslim Community Association (EMCA) and Eritrean Muslim Youth UK (EMYUK).

Outside of work, he is a keen photographer and foodie. And thinks Arsenal supporters are the worst thing since sparkling water.

Na'eem Ibn Farooq - Head of Operations

Na’eem is a MSc Violence, Conflict and Development and BSc Economics graduate with eight years’ experience within disciplines such as strategy, project management and research. In his spare time, he is a freelance researcher, enjoys playing sports, HIIT training and reading whilst recovering.

Tasnim Akhtar - Administrator

Tasnim graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Sociology with Criminology from Goldsmiths University of London. She has actively engaged in widening participation activities, delivering and facilitating summer schools, as well as working on projects aimed at supporting young people on their journey into higher education. Her degree has inspired her to address issues surrounding inequality and diversity within multicultural societies.

During her free time, Tasnim enjoys visiting scenic cafes, museums and art galleries.

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