The She Speaks We Hear Podcast

Giving a voice to Muslim women

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  • 1. Palestine, democracy and the government

    The She Speaks We Hear Podcast is back for a brand new season!Season 2 starts with Sharmeen Ziauddin interviewing Dr Myriam Francois, a Franco-Irish journalist, writer and filmmaker.At the time of recording 30,000 people have been killed in Gaza, by Israel since 7 Oct, many of them women and children. Off the back of the helplessness and trauma many people are feeling globally, it was important for She Speaks We Hear to capture this sentiment. Hearing those voices that often go unheard. To kick off this season we will largely focus on the tragedy taking place in Gaza and all the consequences of it across the world, with a focus on the UK.In this explosive episode (there are a few swearies) Myriam says it how it is - she does not hold back and articulates what a lot of people are feeling.Sharmeen and Myriam discuss the state of democracy following the British Prime Minister's recent remarks about the Palestinian solidarity marches that call for a ceasefire in Israel and Gaza, how to beat the misinformation that is out there on social media and what you can do to support the Palestinian people.Myriam also talks about her latest documentary Finding Alaa which you can watch on BBC iPlayer.She can be found on @MyriamFrancoisC on X or myzfrancois on Instagram. You can visit her website at can find Sharmeen on @sharm33n or Instagram @sharm33nz.Please follow She Speaks We Hear on Instagram and X to keep up to date with events and podcast episodes. Visit the website and to get in touch email

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  • 20. Episode 20: Talking Tate and social media influence with Akeela, Aliya & Sharmeen

    In the first episode of 2023, you can listen to a candid conversation with the She Speaks We team. Akeela, Aliya and Sharmeen talk about the pressing issues affecting Muslim women and society in general. There is discussion of Andrew Tate, how social media has shaped modern society and the polarisation of politics. Aliya shares some absolute gems about a range of topics including the significance of 2008! They also share their personal reflections on 2022 as well as some chat about Netflix and representation. All three share their 2022 book/TV recommendations. You don't want to miss this one.You can follow the women on their personal Twitter accounts:Akeela AhmedAliya ZaidiSharmeen ZiauddinOr follow She Speaks We Hear on socials:TwitterInstagramLinkedIn 
  • 19. Episode 19: The forgotten women of Afghanistan with Peymana Assad & Sveto Ishoq

    Most of the narrative around Afghanistan is politically charged, especially regarding women's rights. But how often do we get to hear from Afghan women themselves?In this special episode, Sharmeen interviews Councillor Peymana Assad and Afghan women’s rights activist Sveto Muhammad Ishoq who explain what is really going on in Afghanistan.What is everyday life like for Afghan girls and women?Sveto, who was brought up in Afghanistan and left in 2021 when US troops left, talks about her experiences and why she is campaigning for women's rights and freedom. Peymana, also a former refugee explains the limitations of the Afghanistan Resettlement Scheme.They also talk bout the realities of what life is like for Afghan refugees in the UK and the support they are seeking from the British government. They also talk about practical solutions and ways in which people can help.The Taliban has recently outlawed higher education for women in most of the country — this is one episode you cannot miss.To find out more about the march discussed in the episode go to Peymana Assad: @peymasadContact Sveto Muhammad Ishoq: @sveto_ishoqYou can find out more about She Speaks We Hear on the website: and don't forget to sign up for the newsletter by subscribing.Follow us on:TwitterInstagramLinkedIn 
  • 18. Episode 18: Becoming Muslim with Aysha & Ameenah

    Have you ever wondered why so many women convert to Islam? This episode is an honest, spiritual conversation with Aysha Mercedes and Ameenah Shaw about their very personal journeys to Islam. Both women became Muslim in adulthood and share their experiences which led to that moment, and what has happened since. Aysha (a counsellor) and Ameenah (a natural hair product business owner) present the Sister2Sister podcast together and both also work as TV presenters at Islam Channel.Here are the meanings of some of the Arabic words used in the podcast:Revert = Someone who has converted to Islam – the word revert is used because Muslims believe everyone is born Muslim so if you are brought up in a different faith when you become Muslim, you revert backNoor = LightWudu = Ablution/cleansing ritualAl-Fatiha = The first chapter in the QuranTawhid = Oneness of GodShahada = Testifying that Allah is one and Muhammad (pbuh) is his messenger – it is what people say when they officially become MuslimDawah = The act of inviting or calling people to embrace IslamAlhamdulillah= Praise be to GodSubhanallah = Glory be to GodIman = FaithAbaya = Long dress/cloak worn by some Muslim womenDuniya = WorldSalah = Ritual prayerUmmah = CommunityAsalaamu-alaikum - Peace be unto you (equivalent to hello)Walaikum-asalaam - And unto you peace (response to the greeting)Link to Khalid Yaseen’s documentaryYou can find out more about She Speaks We Hear on the website: and don't forget to sign up for the newsletter by subscribing.Follow us on:TwitterInstagramLinkedIn 
  • 17. Episode 17: Pregnancy to motherhood with Anisah Abdullah

    In this episode, Sharmeen speaks to doula and perinatal wellness professional Anisah Abdullah. Anisah specialises in mindset mastery and birth trauma support for expectant and postpartum mothers. She explains what this is and how she is passionate about offering holistic personalised support, putting the power and autonomy back in the mother’s hands. As a black, Muslim veiled woman she experienced first-hand how some spaces can be unwelcoming for women like her. This episode is by no means just for expectant mothers - we all know women around us who have given birth or are about to and this episode is a real education in what they go through from pregnancy to the ‘fourth trimester'. Expectant fathers, new dads, husbands and brothers are welcome too. For further info and resources check out Anisah on Instagram: @inherentbirthYou can find out more about She Speaks We Hear on the website: and don't forget to sign up for the newsletter by subscribing.Follow us on:TwitterInstagramLinkedIn  
  • 16. Episode 16: Trading the corporate life for pink tea with Tabassum Awan

    Sharmeen speaks to Tabassum Awan about how she swapped her successful career in investment banking for her dream of sharing Kashmiri tea with the world. She explains how lack of fulfilment led her to start her own business - the Pink Tea Café. Holder of two masters' degrees, Tabassum talks about her experience on the trading floor and how her banking career helped start her business. She also talks about her local community work since the Grenfell Fire. There is a lot of tea talk and how drinking tea can bring people together! This episode is a must for budding entrepreneurs and tea lovers alike. You may hear the following Arabic words used in the podcast so here is a little translation:Alhamdolillah - Praise be to GodInshallah - God willingMashallah - What God has willedAsalaam-alaikum - Peace be unto youWalaikum-asalaam - And unto you peaceYou can check out the Pink Tea Cafe on Instagram.You can find out more about She Speaks We Hear on the website: and don't forget to sign up for the newsletter by subscribing.You can also follow us onTwitterInstagramLinkedIn 
  • 15. Episode 15: How to transform your passion into a business with Halal Girl About Town

    In this episode, Sharmeen and Layla Hassanali aka Halal Girl About Town, a pioneer in the halal food blogging scene, talk about the ups and downs of being a blogger and influencer, being an entrepreneur, parenting and of course the conversation is dominated by food and restaurants which is Sharmeen’s favourite subject anyway. What does BW stand for and what is Layla’s favourite restaurant? Find out in this foodie special…You can find Layla’s websites here: reach her on Instagram.   (Halal means permissible in Islam. In the context of food, halal means food that Muslims are allowed to eat. As there are a lot of misconceptions about halal meat – this website is a good source of information about halal food.)You can find out more about She Speaks We Hear on the website: and don't forget to sign up for the newsletter by subscribing.You can also follow us on:TwitterInstagramLinkedIn