After a career in the commercial world Laura set up Mitzvah Day in 2008. Mitzvah Day is committed to bringing people together to change the world for the better, through social action and is now running in 20 countries. In the UK our focus is largely on bringing people of different faiths together in an increasingly fractured world.
Elected Senior Vice President of the Board of Deputies of British Jews from 2012-2015, Laura used this time to establish Women in Jewish Leadership to bring more women into leadership roles. As Vice Chair of the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust Laura brings people together to focus on shared issues of genocide, hatred and its prevention. Laura speaks (as often as she can) on issues relating to interfaith relationships, integration, equalities and social action and is a new contributor to Radio 2 Pause for Thought.
Laura’s two passions of equality and inclusion and of interfaith relationships come together in Nisa-Nashim which she is delighted to co-chair with Julie.
Julie SiddiqiCo-Chair, Nisa-Nashim
Julie is a mentor, consultant and activist with a focus on gender issues, Jewish-Muslim relations and social action. She has a background in community grass roots work spanning 20 years.
Julie was the Executive Director of the Islamic Society of Britain from 2010-2014 and was pivotal in peace initiatives following the murder of Lee Rigby in Woolwich. She has spoken on many major news programmes including Radio 4 and Newsnight, at the Christian festival, Greenbelt and the Jewish festival, Limmud, and at receptions hosted by the British Armed Forces.
Julie was previously a member of the Government’s National Muslim Women’s Advisory Group, a mentor for the Prince of Wales Charity, Mosaic and is Patron for Jewish and Muslim theatre group, MUJU.
She is an alumni of the Cambridge Coexist Leadership Programme 2013 and the Women in Leadership, from Windsor Leadership 2015. Julie is Founder and Director of Sadaqa Day, a one day Muslim-led focus on social action, which was launched in March 2015. Julie converted to Islam in March 1995 and is happily married with four children.
Julia HicksProject Manager, Nisa-Nashim
Julia is a former lawyer, who made a career change in 2016. As Project Manager, Julia assists Laura & Julie with the overall strategy of Nisa-Nashim, is the main point of contact for all the local groups and deals with the day to day running of the charity.
Nisa-Nashim could not operate without its team of volunteers working on its central strategy and co-chairing our regional and special interest groups.
Thank you to each and every one of you. You know who you are!