Why this project

Female experiences and stories, in particular those of Muslim women, are all too often reduced, simplified, marginalised. Our stories and narratives are often told by others through their own ideological lens, and frustratingly men will often champion these as their own, hiding implicit racist misogyny.

I’m fed up of hearing about Muslim women in the context of what they do/do not wear; how assimilated they are; the oppression they face; how subjugated they are; have no control; need saving; or are brainwashed into extremist behaviour by the men around them.

I want to platform the stories and experiences of Muslim women, so they can own their narrative, without the cultural filters that often knead these into something else.

An inclusive platform

She Speaks We Hear aims to do just that: simply, hear the voices, and explore the experiences of women from all backgrounds. To simply listen.

My own life story and experience means I am acutely aware of what it is to be silenced because of one’s faith, culture and ethnicity, and gender. Similarly, through my professional experience, I have observed that as a group, Muslim women often have their voices silenced. We face the complex interplay between prejudices arising as a result of our gender, socio-economic status, faith, ethnicity and sexuality, which cause multiple barriers to having our voices meaningfully heard and engaged with.

Sometimes, when Muslim women’s voices are given a platform, it is hijacked by others for their own political or ideological aims, (intentionally or unintentionally), effectively speaking on our behalf, and undermining our agency.

She Speaks We Hear is an online platform for women of any background, to be heard on their terms without being hijacked or silenced by sexism, racism or social disadvantage. Initially this project focuses on women from a Muslim background. However, in due course, I hope to share other experiences too, and welcome women from all backgrounds to get involved. Currently in early development, I am preparing to launch the project sometime during 2015. As the network of contributors grows, I envisage that ideas and opportunities to grow the vision for the project will emerge.

Join us

You can contribute in anyway you like, and as little or as much as you want. You can do so anonymously, or use your real name. You can contribute articles of any length on any subject, although 700 words would be ideal in terms of being accessible for as wide a readership as possible. You can submit a perspective, an experience, opinions or analysis, stories or even audio or video.

I won’t edit your submission. The point of this process is to allow your voice to be heard, unadulterated, without the interface of editing.

All that I ask is that, upon confirmation of your submission, you send me your bio (ideally 50 words), twitter handle, link to your personal blog and so on, and you have a one month deadline to submit your first contribution. In return, you will join the She Speaks We Hear network, and have your name added as a contributor.

Sounds good? Then get involved and email shespeakswehear@gmail.com

Looking froward to platforming diverse women’s stories, experiences and perspectives.


Akeela Ahmed MBE

She Speaks We Hear is founded by Akeela Ahmed you can follow her @AkeelaAhmed


  1. Hello,
    I’m the editor and founder of Mentalhealth4Muslims and would like permission to reprint this series. Thank you.

    1. Hi Nafisa, please do and accredit the author and our site. Thanks! Btw feel free to email us on shespeakswehear@gmail.com

  2. Lilfairtrade says:

    Hello and Assalaam Alaikum Akeela,

    I hope this message finds you well Insha’Allah?

    Alhumdulilah! I’m so happy to have discovered your site this morning.

    Congratulations on establishing this wonderful platform for all women.

    I hope more women will find it a safe haven to talk openly about issues and experiences they are passionate about.

    For the past 8 years I’ve been raising awareness for fairtrade/ethical producers, social and trade justice and ethical consumerism in Dubai, UAE and my home city of Manchester, UK.

    Sadly, I don’t receive much support fron the Muslim community but have never lost heart and continue to vlog in English and Urdu.

    I hope to forward a submission in the near future Insha’Allah.

    My best wishes to you and the ‘She Speaks We Hear’ team.

    Peace and blessings!
    Walaikum Assalaam

    Mrs Sabeena Ahmed
    Fairtrade Nomad and Optimist for Change

    1. Ws Sabeena, so sorry for the late reply! I didn’t notice this message until today. Thanks so much for your kind words.We would love a submission from you, about your campaigning work or anything else. Please do feel free to get in touch via email, (shespeakswehear@gmail.com) and we can think about possible posts you could write or showcasing your work.Thanks again for reaching out and so sorry for the delay in responding. Take care, Akeela

  3. Nazneen Rawal says:

    Al ham dulilah. Mabrook. This is an amazing platform that you have created. I will love to contribute. I have a lot to give on here from my experiences of life. I have gone through discriminations and happy times and with sabr I remained true to myself.

    Muslim women face lots of challenges and are talented yet do not have confidence or support to flourish.

    It’s lovely to see women coming together and supporting each other.

    This website is a blessing and I look forward to work with you.

    I have many many interests and one of them is Parenting. I am a parent and I recently have completed a Parenting course and the next step is becoming a facilitator in Parenting. My goal is to help Muslim women to overcome challenges in Parenting.

    1. Thank you for the kind words! Please email us shespeakswehear@gmail.com

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