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Hi, I’m Shubash. A young, Asian, Muslim women.

I only wanted to be myself and live my life on my terms; shouldn’t have been so hard should it? Well, I could not have been farther from the reality.

Where one would take parental and family support for granted, I have had to fight for and create every opportunity, both in my personal and working environment. Whilst in my personal life my disadvantage was being a woman, in my working life my disadvantage was being of colour/faith.

I fought throughout my adolescence to debunk myths about the role of a woman. I independently completed my education, achieving a Post-Graduate Diploma in Housing Practice in 2005 for obtaining the highest marks in the North West. I have probably had more jobs than one has had hot meals 😉 establishing myself as highly employable and today I work as a Team Leader for Onward Homes, a highly reputable social housing provider. I bought my home at the age of 23 which was vandalised and boarded up many years ago and turned this property around to one of the most sought-after properties in my hometown and it has been mine and my husband’s safe and luxury haven during the pandemic; we have our own dedicated gym room 😊!! And I married through choice, so much so that I proposed to my husband, funded and arranged my own wedding independently!

5 years ago, when my father passed away whilst on holiday, I flew all the way to Saudi Arabia to bury him and took part in the funeral rights. I also led in splitting the inheritance between us siblings equally. This would have been impossible if I had accepted the social norms.

My aim has always been to live a life of honesty and integrity and never to change myself for anyone and the right people will appreciate me as I am. And that is exactly what has happened; for example, as far as my husband is concerned, I can do no wrong😊!

My working life has also presented its fair share of challenges. I have experienced institutional racism. As a Muslim woman I have constantly found myself on the back foot, because of 2 simultaneously impacting characteristics, being a woman and being of BAME/Muslim background. The countless number of setbacks due to my background has not stopped me from persevering with and pursuing my aspirations. I ask you this, how many knocks can you take? How many knocks is too many? At which point do you give up? Do you give up?

Today I work in a healthy working environment, where I feel valued and appreciated for the good work that I do, regardless of the fact that I come from a BAME/Muslim background. I have broken the glass ceiling and am aspiring to further my career to work at Senior Management Level as well as sit on the Board of Non-Executive Directors to deliver housing services to our most vulnerable people in society.

Gender and race differences are irrelevant. The only thing that separates human beings is conduct, good people and bad people, that is it. It is extremely challenging to remain true to yourself when the world is against you. But hold on and persevere and it will all be worth it, I promise!

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