“I have many hopes and dreams but I would love to work with marginalized groups, especially women's groups because women are resilient. No matter where you go in the world, no matter what kind of lives women have, they always show resilience to attain power in the most amazing ways.”
Hira is 25 and youth care worker. She told me, “I work frontline in a group home. I work with youth who come from various backgrounds. Many of the youth I work with come from lives that have caused trauma, addictions, abuse, and mental health issues.” Hira believes she’s percieved as “a progressive Muslim activist within my city, or at least I hope I am. I am involved in many organizations in town and I have put on or help put on many events. I have spoken at rallies and various events, I have raised funds for different projects and raised awareness on many issues. My friend and I put on a “hijab for a day” event at our University to support our hijabi wearing sisters and it was quite a success.” Her proudest achievement is organizing her first rally for Palestine when she first moved to Prince George. She told me 100 people showed up, and it spread awareness about the Palestinian crisis across the city. When I asked Hira what her most challenging experience was she told me, “my struggle with my mental illness. I have mental health illnesses but growing up in my community, mental health isn’t talked about. I was finally diagnosed and medicated two years ago and it changed my life. Living with mental health illnesses and not knowing that I had them was very frustrating. Knowing what I know now, I wish I was given the chance to talk about it, learn about it and seek help when I was younger.”
What is one thing you know for sure?
“I know that I will always be a hard worker. My parents instilled the value of hard work within my siblings and I at a young age. All four of us work very hard to achieve our goals every day. Whether that means I study all week for an exam, pick up over time shifts at work or put in time at the places I volunteer at, I am ambitious and will always work hard to make my future as successful as possible.”