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  Home > Newsletter > MWNUK January 2014 Newsletter
MWNUK January 2014 Newsletter
Date: 31/1/2014

January 2014

Dear Network Member,

Message from MWNUK Executive Director

úHope the start to 2014 has been a positive one for you! MWNUK has been working hard at getting Muslim women's voices heard at various platforms. And as part of our commitment to making our relationships stronger with our members, please do join us on Twitter-  @MuslimWomenUK  , or me personally at  @2faeeza  .

MWNUK would also like to congratulate those Muslim women who made it onto this year's Queen's Honors List:

  Officers of the Order of the British Empire  
Tasmina Ahmed-Sheikh- For services to Business and to the Asian community in Scotland.
Sofina Aktar Motin Islam- For services to Education.
Rafat Mughal- For services to Disadvantaged Women and the community in Haringey.

  Members of the Order of the British Empire  
Zaidah Parveen Ahmed- For services to the community in Rotherham, South Yorkshire.
Aysha Esakji- For services to Challenging Extremism.
Faiza Khan- For services to Young People.
Yasmin Shabir- For services to Equality and Diversity.
Zanib Rasool- For services to the community in Rotherham, South Yorkshire.

We wish you the very best in your future endeavours."-Faeeza Vaid.


In the Media

On the   4thJanuary   ED   Faeeza Vaid   was interviewed by   ITV Central  , on the anniversary of   Malala Yousafzai   being released from hospital. She outlined Malala's ongoing bravery since her attack, and her phenomenal achievements over the past year, including speaking at the UN on her 16th birthday, being the youngest person nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize and being awarded the  2013 UN Human Rights Prize   and the   Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought  .

Roundtable Discussion with Baroness Warsi

On the   9thJanuary   Vice-Chair   Nazmin Akthar   attended a roundtable discussion at the Foreign & Commonwealth Office which was hosted by   Baroness Warsi   on   religious and civil marriages   and arrangements for obtaining   divorce  . This is a topic that MWNUK has been working on for a number of years. See our bookletInformation and Advice on Muslim Marriages in Britain.'

Roundtable Discussion with
Dept Culture, Media & Sport

On the   10thJanuary   Vice-Chair   Nazmin Akthar   attended a roundtable discussion hosted by the   Department of Culture, Media & Sport  . The discussions included looking at   women and socio economic growth   in terms of identifying barriers to women's progression in employment across the equality strands including: race, social economic, gender, single parent, disability, child care and potential solutions.

  Roundtable Discussion with Shadow Minister  

On the   11thJanuary   diverse MWNUK members participated in a roundtable discussion with   Shadow Minister for Women and Equalities Gloria De Piero MP  . The event provided an opportunity for the voices of Muslim women to reach policy influencers directly. And there was no holding back - the attendees spoke openly about the issues affecting them. Topics included corruption in local politics, childcare, discrimination and much more. See our gallery forphotosfrom the day.

  Muslim Marriage
Working Group

On the   20thJanuary   ED   Faeeza Vaid   attended a meeting as part of ongoing work with the   Ministry of Justice's Muslim Marriage Working Group  . Key discussions included upcoming project ideas to tackle the issue of   registration of Muslim marriages  .

  Child Exploitation Inquiry Submission  

A cross-party inquiry was launched, supported by Barnardos, into the legislation that aims to protect young people from sexual exploitation and trafficking within the UK. MWNUK responded to this inquiry with a written submission.  We recommended that alongside any legislation measures, it is vital that resourcing and funding for culturally appropriate frameworks and training be considered a priority. Our full response can be downloadedhere.

  Contribution to
Misogyny Conference

On   26thJanuary   ED   Faeeza Vaid   spoke at   The Deen Institute's Misogyny Conference  , raising questions about   women's authority in Islam  . The conference included presentations from other academics, including Dr. Ingrid Mattson, Professor Tariq Ramadan and Mariam Francois-Cerrah. See our gallery forphotographs.

  Ongoing Child Sexual Exploitation Work  

  • On   29thJanuary  as part of MWNUK's ongoing CSE work, National Network Coordinator Shahin Ashraf and ED Faeeza Vaid attended   Birmingham's Community Engagement Forum on Child Sexual Exploitation  . The meeting was chaired Birmingham's Detective Superintendent Tim Bacon, Head of Child Safeguarding.
  • MWNUK's CSE report,Unheard Voices: Sexual Exploitation of Asian Girls and Young Womenwas referenced in the   Department of Health Working Group's report    on Child Exploitation.  The parts of the Unheard Voices report specifically highlighted can be found here.  They have highlighted specific issues concerning Asian female victims. It also makes recommendations to improve the health and wellbeing of children who have experienced exploitation. It is designed to help health services improve prevention techniques and to achieve the best possible results for affected children and young people.  The Department of Health Working Group report may be foundhere.



Musawah is a global Muslim women's movement. One of its advocates from South Africa, Fatima Seedat has written an article entitled úIslam, Feminism, and Islamic Feminism.Ě For those who do not like the term feminism and for those who do, Fatima Seedat urges the reader to reconsider its use, particularly in varying contexts. She states that Muslim women's equality work útakes Islam for grantedĚ as an independent, intellectual and spiritual tradition with its own history of gender and inequality.

Asian Women of Achievement Awards 2014

In 2014, the Asian Women of Achievement Awards, held in association with The Royal Bank of Scotland, celebrate their   15th anniversary  . In the past decade and a half, this national programme has been a springboard for remarkable women, bringing them to public attention and celebrating their contribution to UK society. Getting involved in these awards can have a great impact on a person's organisation, personal profile and so much more. Year on year, the event attracts significant press coverage and media interest.

The   entry deadline   for nominations this year is   March 17, 2014  . The awards ceremony takes place on   June 4 2014  .

Childcare Grant Scheme

A governmentChildcare Business Grant scheme is available to individuals, and nurseries alike, who are   starting up a new business  and deemed eligible, could mean a cash injection for the new business of either   £250   or   £500   to help cover the costs of things like   training, equipment, insurance, and adaptations   to premises at a most critical time.  The scheme commenced in April 2013 and has proved to be a great success, and there are still funds available.  However, the Grant will cease once the funds are spent.  However, apply as soon as you can as grants will be given on a  first come, first served' basis.


NSPCC Underwear Rule

The   Underwear Rule   is a simple way that parents can help   keep children safe from abuse  - without using scary words or mentioning sex. The   NSPCC   have developed a simple   guide for parents  , and a   child-friendly version  , to help you talk   PANTS   with your child.

PACE Online Resource to
Tackle Child Exploitation

Pace & Virtual College's Safeguarding Children e-Academy have teamed up to create a free, interactive e-course that equips parents, carers and others interested in learning more about child exploitation with the knowledge and information to help safeguard children from this abuse. Learners will be able to recognise the signs of CSE, understand the impact of this abuse and know what to do if they suspect a child might be at risk.


Scotland Considering
Criminalising Forced Marriage

THE Scottish Government has been urged to consider creating legislation criminalising forced marriage in Scotland, in a new report by MSPs on the Justice Committee. Click here for full article.

Faith Summit on FGM

Government officials organised the first faith summit on female genital mutilation which was attended by Muslim, Christian and other religious leaders.  Click here for full article.

Why Feminism
Does Not Need Rebranding

Feminism is no more a brand than Catholicism or Islam or liberalism or atheism. All of them are ways of viewing the world. Re-branding is an admission of defeat. It accepts the opinion of the critics, of those who do not like or support the original. It tries to win over those who will never be won over and in doing so, not just loses the people who always supported and believed in it, but actively slaps them in the face.  Click here for full article.


Parliament Week
Partners Conference

  Parliament Week Partners' Conference   will be held in Portcullis House, Westminster, London on   21 February 2014  .

The Parliament Week Partners' Conference is a   free day of talks  ,  workshops   and   networking   to inform and inspire organisations from across the UK who are interested in taking part in Parliament Week 2014. Parliament Week is an annual programme of events and activities that inspire, inform and connect people across the UK with Parliament and democracy.The conference is for organisations who are already Parliament Week partners as well as those who haven't taken part before and want to find out more.  During the day you will hear about plans for Parliament Week 2014, how other partners have taken part in Parliament Week before and have opportunities to share ideas and create your own partnerships.

To find out more, and to   register  , go to the Parliament Week partners' conference webpage.

Islamic Studies
Pedagogy in Britain

  Date:  4th March 2014
  Location:  Derby

This seminar will bring together   Islamic Studies educators   from universities and Muslim institutions   Darul Ulooms, Jamias, Hawzas and Madrassas   to discuss, debate and share their different approaches to the   teaching of Islamic Studies in Britain  , and to thus demonstrate the   synergies   that are possible between their respective approaches.

For more information click here

Feminista Regional Campaigner Mentoring

  Feminista   are offering a   free, 5-day training and mentoring course   in   Birmingham & the Black Country   for people who are looking to grow the confidence, understanding and skills needed to transform their communities.

The course will provide a space for people who are tackling   gender inequality   on different fronts to work with together to develop a greater understanding of ourselves, the challenges we're facing and how we tackle them.

There are two ways to apply:

1. Complete the application form by 23:59 on   Sunday 9th February  .

2. Alternatively you can call to talk through your answers to the application questions on the phone. Please email   by 23:59 on   Thursday 6th February   to organise an informal phone conversation about the course and why you want to attend.

MWNUK's commitment to furthering the plights of Muslim women in the UK is met with the ongoing challenge of funding our initiatives. We really need your financial support in bringing about justice for Muslim women in the UK. As a registered charity,   number 1155092)   you can donate here.

  In This Newsletter  

Message from Executive Director

In the Media
Roundtable Discussion with Baroness Warsi
Roundtable Discussion with Dept pf Culture, Media & Sport
Roundtable Discussion with Shadow Minister
Muslim Marriage Working Group
Child Exploitation inquiry Submission
Contribution at Misogyny Conference
Ongoing Child Exploitation Work

Unity & Hope

Asian Women of Achievement Awards 2014
Childcare Grant Scheme

NSPCC Underwear Rule
PACE Online Resource to tackle Child Exploitation

Scotland Considering Criminalising Forced Marriage
Faith Summit on FGM
Why Feminism Does Not Need Rebranding

Parliament Week Partners Conference
Islamic Studies Pedagogy in Britain
Feminista Campaigner Training


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