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The Sisters Project combats negative stereotypes of Muslim women by showcasing the diverse stories of inspirational women across Canada, while also creating a space of inclusion and belonging for all self-identifying Muslim women to embrace and celebrate their unique identities

Created by Alia Youssef

Bochra

Bochra

“Ethics is the only way to cohabitate and live together. We always talk about “vivre-ensemble” [Group cohesiveness] without talking about the conditions of it: ethics creates solidarity.”

Bochra is a 36-year-old research consultant on immigration and ethnic identity issues, an author, as well as an active member in several organizations including the “Silk Road Institute” and “La Ligue des droits et Libertes”. Bochra has a PhD in Urban Studies with her research focusing on ethnicity, immigration, and cohabitation in the city-space. This is why she is pictured in a neighbourhood of Montreal, Quebec called Mile-End, as it is a source of inspiration, a place of research, and reflection.  Her proudest accomplishment is raising her son and completing her PhD thesis which is an in-depth look at the spatializing of the Maghrebi community and their public perception in Montreal. She told me, “You have to be conscious at every moment that what you are doing won’t necessarily be read or change the country nor the world, but you have to resist, and write every word that you hear and idea you have because this is something that brings collective reflections.” Her PhD thesis is a published book and Bochra hopes that this will give younger people access to a narrative about North-Africans in Montreal. Besides ethics, education is the most important thing to Bochra. She told me, “Many educated people forget to give back, to transmit, and to be involved in their communities. As a woman, an immigrant, and an intellectual, I have to give back. That’s what being Muslim is about.” When I asked Bochra what her hope for the future is she told me she’d like to work with “young researchers, young people from underrepresented communities who want to write their own narratives.” She continued, “Of course being in academia would be easier, but university or not, I will continue to work as a researcher, an intellectual, who ceaselessly tries to inspire others.”

Q&A Feature:

What is your favourite quality about yourself?

"Perseverant and balanced"

What is a fun fact about you that you haven’t told me yet?

"I play soccer and I love to tackle!"

Khadija

Khadija

Nora

Nora