My Sahiyo U.S. Activists Retreat Reflection

By Maryah Haidery Growing up as a member of the Dawoodi Bohra Community in the United States is a challenging experience, especially for women. It’s like precariously walking across a tightrope while trying to balance two vastly different worlds. In one world, there are the positive benefits that come from belonging to a community rich …

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Sahiyo U.S. Activists Retreat: A Reflection

By Zehra Patwa, WeSpeakOut Retreat [ri-treet]: a period of group withdrawal for prayer, meditation, study, or instruction. When I initially signed up for Sahiyo’s retreat for Bohra anti-FGC activists in the US, I thought it would be a good opportunity to network, share ideas, and develop strategies.  What I wasn’t prepared for was the incredibly …

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Shifting terrains: Lessons learnt from the first U.S. Activists Retreat for Bohras against Female Genital Cutting

(This post was originally published on the blog of Georgetown University’s Berkley Center for Religion, Peace, and World Affairs, the Berkley Forum) By Mariya Taher, MSW, MFA In this day and age when social media has penetrated our lives, 24-hour news cycles shape our worldviews, and there is never enough time to process the influx of …

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My experience at Sahiyo’s first activists’ retreat in India

by Chandni Shiyal Sahiyo administrative assistant One day before Sahiyo’s first activists’ training retreat for Bohras held in February in Mumbai, I was a bit nervous about how it would pan out in terms of arrangement and its overall functioning. But at the same time, I was excited to meet many of the new participants …

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Sahiyo hosts third annual Activist Retreat

Sahiyo held its third annual Activist Retreat in the United States via Zoom from April 10-12. The aim of the retreat was to continue to work toward building a network of U.S.-based Bohra activists against female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C) by strengthening relationships with one another, sharing best practices, and providing tools for activists to utilize …

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Sahiyo Activist Retreats

The first annual Sahiyo Activists’ Retreats in the US and in India were organized in 2018 for advocates working to end Female Genital Cutting (FGC). The primary aim of these retreats in each country is to bring together ‘activists’ speaking out against FGC — people who work either publicly or anonymously to raise community awareness …

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Sahiyo’s Second Annual Retreat: A Space for Healing and Reflection

By Maryum Saifee In late March, I participated in Sahiyo’s Second Annual Retreat for survivors and allies in the campaign to end female genital mutilation (FGM). Attendees from the first retreat commented on how the program had more than doubled in size to over 20 this year. As an FGM survivor who reluctantly stumbled into …

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Why I care about khatna: Reflections from the 2019 Sahiyo Activist Retreat

By Alisha Bhagat I first found out about female genital cutting, or khatna, in my community in my twenties; my mother told me it had been done to her. At the time I was shocked. I thought this was something that happened to other people in far off places, not to my mom or Nani …

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Sahiyo USA’s Second Annual Activist Retreat: A recap

To learn more about the activists retreat, read the summary report.  In March 2019, Sahiyo U.S. hosted our second annual activist retreat for women connected to the Bohra community who are concerned about the issue of FGC within the community. Sahiyo understands it takes many to bring about social change, and as a result, we …

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My inner healing at Sahiyo’s Activist Retreat in the U.S.

By Anonymous Country: United States Age: 34 To be honest, it was hard for me to make the decision to go to the Sahiyo Activist Retreat earlier this year. I grew up in the Dawoodi Bohra community in India, and having had my share of challenges with the community that involved threats to my family, …

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