I remember that during the privilege walk, they asked us to take a step back if our religion is portrayed in a negative light on TV. It was uncomfortable for me to step back because my Hindu friends were also there, but I really feel that Muslims are portrayed negatively on TV, always shown as terrorists. It was helpful to be able to share what is on my mind, and I felt lighter afterwards.
The first time I went to Bluebells school for the Tasawwur workshop, I was in awe. I had never been to such a big school before. I didn’t know much English, so I was hesitant to speak. But now, when I go back as part of the leadership team for the next round, I will meet people with full tashan! I will tell the new kids, “Look, if you don’t speak English, speak in Hindi…don’t hesitate!”
I came back as part of the leadership team thinking that newcomers might find it easier to open up to me than to adults. For example, we have a few participants who use wheelchairs, and we have to adapt the activities so that they can also be involved. So when there are movement exercises, I tell them, “I am your body, you give me instructions,” and I follow their commands so they aren’t left out.