Guest post by Shireen Ahmed – http://footybedsheets.tumblr.com/
The word Outburst is a noun and has the following definitions:
i) a sudden release of strong emotion ; ii) a sudden outbreak of a particular activity ; iii) a volcanic eruption
For me, it signifies something much more personal, important and a project that I consider a blessing to be associated with and a necessity.
My own definition is as follows:
Outburst: A movement by a group of amazing women, who identify as Muslim, coordinated by a team of 8 Muslim women, out of the Barbara Schlifer Commemorative Clinic. Outburst! fosters love and friendship, encouragement and sisterhood and provides a safe space for women to seek counseling and innumerable supports. Outburst provides opportunities for women to showcase their visual art, poetry, dance, voices and express themselves artistically with solidarity and guidance.
I am so incredibly proud to be a member of the Outburst Advisory Team. I am continuously inspired, awed by all the women involved at Outburst. I have rarely seen or been in spaces for Muslim women that are as accepting and accommodating.
As our wonderful circle grows and grows, it is important to understand that Outburst projects and programs are all free and in accessible spaces. They provide art based groups, workshops and training, crisis and individual counselling and best practice and research projects.
They employ young Muslim women whenever possible and use the expertise in the form of mentors and advisors from the community.
Outburst works hard to maintain community relationships with other organizations and is very well respected. They exchange ideas and work with other agencies to combat Violence Against Women, run seminars on Forced Marriage and provide much-needed expertise on issues relating to Young Muslim women in Canada.
I have had the privilege of participating in a few of their projects, travelling to a conference where they presented and am constantly learning and more impressed after each encounter.
Their pioneering work is phenomenal.
Outburst! Young Muslim Women’s Project is a movement by virtue of its mandate and its very existence empowers..
And for Outburst! to continue, they need your support.
Please continue to donating to, participating and supporting Outburst.
Let’s keep Toronto as one of the most vibrant, inclusive and phenomenal communities of Muslim women in Canada.
We all need Outburst.
Shireen Ahmed is a writer and advocate focusing on Muslim women in Sports. She is an athlete, community organizer, and works with Youth of Colour on empowerment projects and is an avid sports coach and mentor. She lives in the Greater Toronto Area.