When Zakia Haque was pursuing her VCE she realised that study had taken over her life and there had to be more. She felt a deep-seated urge to do something for others. She hasn’t stopped since.
Taking on various roles during her studies, once she made it into university she put her hand up for everything.
While she completed her Bachelor of Biomedicine at the University of Melbourne and Masters of Research in Biomedical Science at Monash University, she became an executive member of the Muslim Students Association (MSA) secretary of AE Youth, committee member of University of Melbourne Islamic Studies (UMIS) and president of Monash University Islamic Society (MUIS)
“I knew then, that alongside everything I was doing for myself, study, work etc that a part of me needed to be doing something for others,” she said.
“That realisation also led me to shift my focus and interest towards serving and working with youth.”
Nowadays the 26-year-old volunteers with Federation of Australian Muslim Students (FAMSY) Mercy Mission Dawah Inc and Human Appeal International (HAI)
Her employment is even driven by serving her community; diversity workshop facilitator for Possible Dreams International (PDI) Quran and Islamic studies teacher at Al Ehsan Centre Islamic School and project coordinator for Embrace Education.
Signposting identity, empowerment and connection with wider Muslim community as the major challenges facing youths today, Zakia believes “a well-connected and unified Muslim community” is all we need.
“I truly believe it would pave the path to an empowered, educated and well skilled group of Muslim youth who will in turn invest back into the community. The youth are the future after all,” she said.
“Empowering youth with education, empowering youth to be leaders and to feel well networked as well as empowering youth with opportunities. The youth should be able to rely on the Muslim community to have their backs when they need it most, to support their aspirations, to support their passions, to provide opportunities that will allow them to pursue all that and be exemplary members of society in the wider Australian communities.”
Zakia is humble about her achievements and sees them as opportunities rather than accomplishments.
”I’m grateful to be able to work for the community and assist, on some level, towards positive, long lasting change. Alhamdulilah for the opportunities that have come my way enabling me to work in different organisations over the years,” she said.
Although she hopes to have discovered the key to unlocking the hidden super powers in the human brain within the next five years, she’s happy to just be a productive member of the Muslim community.
“I hope to inspire and be inspired by other Muslim youths to achieve amazing things.”