Our Stories

Click portraits below to follow each individual’s journey.

Sahar Mohammadzadeh: Hearing Diversity by Listening to Hidden Voices

“If humanity is to be humble and respectful of different perspectives, if humanity is to bask in the breadth of experience, then humanity must be classified the universal race, regardless of the religion or culture that accompanies it.”

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Nazida Syed: Starting Over, Fighting for Change

"I want to make ways for women like myself who have been victims of domestic violence to be able to get back on their own feet, take control of their lives, and their images, their reputations in society, so they will never be looked down upon for leaving an abusive marriage."

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Tahany Yassin: Launching ChiTown Photography

"I still continue learning because there is always room to grow. There are so many different techniques and effects a photographer can create with the vision they have set in their mind."

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Sameena Mustafa: Taking My Seat at the Table

"After one of my shows, an Israeli woman approached me in tears saying how much my performance moved her. Art could bring people together."

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Suraiya Rahman: Celebrate & Include Cultural Muslims

"I lost my personal faith, but not my heritage. Being a Muslim is more than just the god you pray to. It is identity, ritual, history, and culture. I have not lost any of those things."

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Sunny Akomu Akhigbe: A Boy and His Dream

"A few weeks after I was born I was bundled from the city and then my mother, myself, and everything that she had was left behind in the city."

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Barakat Olorunoje: No Limits As A Woman

"My journey begins at a younger age when I realized that I had a lot to my identity. My parents are originally from Nigeria and I was born in America, which already gave me two types of identities."

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Salah Al-Mejri: From Tunisia to America- My Journey In The NBA

“There are many lessons to be learned from NBA players, but perhaps the most valuable is not only to enjoy what you’re doing, but to celebrate the fact that you have the chance to do it to begin with.”

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Stephanie Yousif: Growing Up Assyrian

"Also, the identity of Assyrians is controversial. I feel like if I was born in Iraq, but was an Assyrian I still would identify as an Iraqi."

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Albert Pak: Cultivating Passion To Improve Humanity

"Pretty much ever since I was little I was always into drawing. When I was back in Uzbekistan I went to an art academy. When I was little, my dream was to become a doctor, but then I figured out that I like computers more."

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Hira Umer: Baking Towards A Breakthrough

"Cultural taboo and judgmental people aside, I focused just on my son and my business. Having a new business is challenging, being a single mom is challenging, combine the two and you have double the challenges."

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Yasir Dhanoon: Launching Project Souvenir

"In 2011, I was given the greatest gift I would ever receive: a one-way ticket to New York City through the United States refugee resettlement program."

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Sidra Rafique: My Journey From Extremism to Free-Thinking

"Although I am a graduate of an extremist madrassah education system, today I work tirelessly on inclusivity, promoting understanding of progressive ideas, peaceful coexistence, and independent thought."

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Vareesha Khan: Native

"I’ve become claustrophobic with conflicting identities, Pressing against my skin, The questions brought by past and present, Cutting at my throat, and frustrating my future, Pushing me further from the shore."

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Hassan Akmal: Championing Change

"I believed that even if one person in a community is inspired, it is enough, because every community needs a leader. My passion towards fulfilling a mission and impacting change is reflected throughout my personality."

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Aisha Subair: The Path Towards Self Acceptance

"At a point, I wanted to be American so bad. It took me a little bit to accept me being Nigerian and Muslim. I went to back Nigeria in 2012. And, things were very different."

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News Updates


Join MALA for MetFriday—Drop-in Drawing

Join MALA at the MET, and draw inspiration from artists and original works of art on May 12th, 2017 from 6:30-8:30 pm.

Apr 20, 2017

MALA Presents National Geographic’s ”GENDER REVOLUTION: A JOURNEY WITH KATIE COURIC”

Join MALA in partnership with Intersections International; I'm From Driftwood; and Believe Out Loud for a special screening and panel discussion of National Geographic's "GENDER REVOLUTION: A JOURNEY WITH KATIE COURIC" in New York city on May 5th.

Apr 12, 2017

MALA’s Feature in the Huffington Post-National Women’s History Month

This storytelling campaign, launched in partnership with The New Agenda, emphasizes the importance of celebrating and encouraging the success of Muslim American women in a wide range of backgrounds and career paths.

Apr 12, 2017
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