There is a saying that the future is in the hands of the young. ICA’s 2019 Diversity Scholarship award winners should give us a lot of hope for the future!
ICA awards two Diversity Scholarships to support the educational goals of students focused on diversity. This year, thanks to anonymous donors, we were able to raise the scholarship award raised $1,000 to $2,500 per student.
Zainab Kathrada received our Undergrad award for her commitment to supporting the rights of women and the Muslim community while working on a two-year diploma program in Community, Family and Child Studies at Camosun College.
She immigrated to Canada when she was 3 years old and feels strongly connected to Victoria as her home. Zainab’s family is Gujarati Indian with multiple generations of her family based in South Africa. Being raised with strong faith-based values and community gave her sense of identity.
“I was taught to be a part of community, teach and return to them. I was told not to hide my identity and be more vocal about it,” said Zainab.
With a passion for writing Zainab published her first blog at the age of 16 and began writing articles for community magazines including ‘Sisters Magazine’, which focused on Muslim women. She also taught at Sunday school addressing the concerns of young children from her community helping them to understand the importance of wearing a ‘hijab’, having a strong sense of identity with their faith community and teaching them about Islam. “In this way, I wish to create positive change and awareness within my community,” said Zainab.
“I’m grateful to have received the ICA scholarship. Now, I can save more and think about pursuing my future goals.”
Ana Celeste MacLeod received ICA’s graduate scholarship. She is participating in Indigenous land-based research and attended an Innovative Young Indigenous Leaders Symposium that focuses on understanding, advocating and learning about cultural awareness and human rights of Indigenous peoples and communities.
Born in Guatemala, Ana was adopted at just six-months old by a family of English and Scottish ancestry and raised in Victoria. Her birth mother is from El-Salvador and her birth father’s origins unknown. Ana identifies as Latina with mixed Spanish and Indigenous roots. She began visiting the First Peoples House at UVIC where she was introduced to several Indigenous professors. “The professors invited me to ceremonies of Indigenous communities which bought me closer to the community,” said Ana.
“I’d like to work as a Registered Clinical Counsellor on a reserve and work with indigenous youth. My long-term goal is to pursue a PhD in Indigenous Law and to keep working for the community.”
For now, ICA’s scholarship will support Ana’s studies as she plans for the future.