More Than A Survivor: An interview with Shabana

Sahiyo understands that being a survivor of female genital cutting (FGC) is just one moment of your life and only one part of who you are as a person. Oftentimes, being labeled as a survivor can prevent people from seeing a person in any other context beyond survivorship.

Our campaign, #MoreThanASurvivor, explores our individuality and shows the world what makes us unique. After all, who we are is made up of all the moments in our lives, not just one.


Where do you live?

The Kingdom of Bahrain

Where’s the favorite place you have traveled to, lived in, or would like to visit? 

I would love to visit New Zealand. It looks like a beautiful place to explore. 

What are some of your passions? 

Traveling, writing, reading, soft sciences, art, health and fitness, and caring for animals.

What does an average day look like for you? 

I wake up, journal, do a workout, shower, start work (from home) running my creative agency, wind down with family or a good book in the evening, play with my cat, journal, meditate, sleep. Throw in a zillion cups of coffee.

What are some things you do for self-care? 

I workout, take a steam in our bathroom-turned-into-a-sauna at home, read, journal, meditate, get a facial and a massage when salons were open.

What are five words to describe you? 

Content, peaceful, loving, passionate, eccentric.

What are your hobbies? 

Gardening, reading, sketching, listening to music

What is your profession or what career would you like to be in?

I am the founder and managing director of a creative agency, a freelance group fitness instructor, and a published author. 

What did you want to be when you grew up? 

It varied from ballet dancer to some sort of writer or artist, to a job in marketing.

What is your favorite food?

Thai cuisine

What is your proudest achievement? 

Not conforming to society and living life the way I want to

What is a hidden talent that you possess? 

Healing others through meditation

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