Celebrating inspirational women and girls from Slough

Published: 28 November 2018

Inspirational women and girls from Slough were celebrated at Slough Youth Parliament’s (SYP) Women Leading Women event at The Curve this month.

The female-only event, which took place on 17 November, marked the centenary of the UK suffrage movement and the Representation of the People Act 1918; which gave all men, and some women, the right to vote for the first time.

On the day, residents brought along an inspirational role model to be part of a special portrait exhibition featuring 100 Slough women; set to be displayed at The Curve next year.

The free event, which was organised in conjunction with the council and Slough based human rights charity Jeena International, also featured a networking lunch, plus talks by the council’s chief executive Josie Wragg, Thames Valley Police commander for Slough, superintendent Sarah Grahame, and more.

The day, which was attended by more than 70 women from a range of backgrounds and ages, showcased the many achievements of women and girls from across the borough.

One notable example included Marium Khan, an outreach worker and Oxford University graduate.

She spoke about her background and the fact that when she was growing up, it was not normal for girls to go into higher education.

However this did not stop her achieving her dreams and attending one of the country’s most prestigious institutions.

Councillor Shabnum Sadiq, cabinet member for children and education, Councillor Pavitar K. Mann, cabinet member for regulation and consumer protection, and Councillor Natasa Pantelic, cabinet member for health and social care were also all in attendance at the event.

Alaa Fawaz, chairwoman of SYP and Women Leading Women, said: "We had such a great turnout and it was amazing to hear such inspirational stories from ordinary women in Slough, who you would normally walk past on the street.

“It truly made me realise how each and every one of us has impacted the people around us and our community differently, and it deserves to be recognised.

“The networking event was a great way to come together to celebrate the centenary of women's suffrage and how much women have achieved and how much we have yet to achieve!

“As a young person, I wish to continue to advocate for female empowerment and host more events in the future."

Councillor Shabnum Sadiq, cabinet member for children and education, said: “It is 100 years since women gained the right to vote, a milestone which did not come without its struggles.

“Today women across Slough continue to make positive contributions in our community, whether they’re making waves in leadership roles or working tirelessly in the background as unsung heroes.

“Women Leading Women was a fantastic event which shone a spotlight on these deserving females. I look forward to many more worthwhile events of this kind happening in our borough in the future."