"I've found a safe space to be my best self. I hope I can be the same to other girls in my community

In their own words: Zahara's Dream Mentorship Experience by Fariah (Mentee, Kenya) and Michel (Mentor, Zimbabwe)

"It is a bitter-sweet moment to see the first cohort of Zahara's Dream Mentorship programme coming to an end. Reflecting back I am filled with gratitude and pride at what we have achieved over the last year. When I was selected to be a Mentor for Zahara's Dream, with the understanding that it was a Global Programme, I asked Verlaine, the Founder, to specifically pair me up with a mentee from my home country, Zimbabwe and preferably someone in my City that I could meet with from time to time.

I was then paired with a young Muslim girl from Kenya, Fariah Abdi, instead of refusing, I decided to take on the challenge and what a journey it has been. As a Youth Advocate who uses a Values-Based Approach in her advocacy work I have learnt a lot from her. Her drive to educate her community on issues that affect women is unmatched. I enjoyed being Fariah’s mentor because she was self-driven and passionate about her development. I am grateful that I have also gained a sister."


"When I first joined Zahara's Dream program, I was not really sure what it is I wanted to achieve. It was during one of my most challenging points of my life because I was transitioning from school and I did not know really how best I would take on with my life especially my community work. It was also the point where my initiative for young Muslimahs was taking a toll on me due to community backlash and many other constraints. I was partnered with Michel Mzondo who I love to call Mimi as my mentor. She has held my hand through this period and encouraged me to be brave and not afraid to put myself out there. My favorite words from her are "Fariah you are good at what you do don't let anyone put you down or tell you otherwise because God has your back and no one is doing you a favor". These words have encouraged me to overcome my fear of disappointments. I have found a big sister and a friend in her. Her ability to celebrate all her wins has encouraged me to be my number one support system and celebrate myself. In this community I have found a safe space to be my best self. I hope I can be the same to other girls in my community."


Thank you Verlaine for the opportunity!

Fariah and Michel, May 2021 Mentee-Mentor, 2020-2021 Cohort

#BeYouPowerfully #WhenSheRisesWeAllRise

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