LONDON: Mosques across the UK are being urged to recruit more women into trustee and managerial roles by the Muslim Council of Britain (MCB) at an event today on 7 March marking International Women’s Day.
The event sees the launch of the ‘Women in Mosques Development Programme’, a 6-month pilot training and mentoring programme designed to support talented upcoming female leaders navigate their way through the boardrooms of mosques and other third sector organisations.
While many mosques have diverse trustee and management boards, many also have few or no women involved in management, with the MCB office regularly receiving emails of complaints. Moreover, research by the Charity Commission last year also reveals that men outnumber women in all charity trustee boards in general by two to one.
Speaking at the event Harun Khan, MCB Secretary-General, willsay, “Whilst the under representation of women in mosque management has been acknowledged for some time, it’s time that more tangible action is taken to ensure women are given equal and fair access in all aspects of mosque life.” Zara Mohammed, MCB Assistant Secretary General said, “International Women’s Day has now become a reminder of the courage and great achievements of women in the past and present. As MCB we hope to continue supporting our communities to do just this.”
The ‘Women in Mosques Development Programme’ will assign upcoming female leaders with a mentor, arrange visits to best practice mosques and third sector organisations, as well as provide media and Charity Commission training. “I hope this and other initiatives like it result in more opportunities for women within our societies and organisations,” said Tahira Muhammad from Edinburgh Central Mosque. Mujidat Mebude, Education Officer from Old Kent Road Mosque said, “My mosque values women and is open to all women from different backgrounds.
Mobilising and training young women is vitally important to help develop beneficial services that our mosques provide across the country.” The ‘Women in Mosques Development Programme’ will run between July and December 2018.
Applicants can apply online by 30 April at www.mcb.org.uk/women-inmosques This pilot programme is one of a number of initiatives planned by the Muslim Council of Britain in 2018 and beyond to support capacity building of Muslim communities. It will be reviewed following completion and there are plans to launch a similar programme open to men in the near future.