Dear Friends and Supporters of Domestic Harmony Foundation (DHF),
With humility, gratitude, and excitement, in March 2017, I extended my heart and hand for the torch of leadership in joining the extraordinary DHF team. As I settle into the role as DHF’s new incoming Executive Director, I take this opportunity to connect with all of you to say hello as this process unfolds and as we usher in the new month of October, when we highlight National Domestic Violence Awareness Month. I am present to the fact that I stand on the shoulders of giants and follow in the footsteps of trailblazers, many of whom I have the privilege of working alongside every day, building upon a shared commitment to promote healthy and peaceful relationships and families in our community and in the world.
Working as a partner in the field years ago, and as a long-time admirer, friend and supporter, I’m continually inspired by the creation of DHF as an organization specifically designed to address the solution to gender-based violence, rather than lingering on the problem; we know the saying, “What you resist, persists!”, well, when we focus our efforts working “against” the tides of a social ill, we may only get so far, if at all. For me, the word ‘Harmony’ in Domestic Harmony Foundation, exemplifies the magnetic pull towards having this organization grow to the next level while immersing myself further in service of advancing social justice.
It is from a clear space of nothing, that we cause the transformation to soar – where healing, resilience, hope, and action replace fear, uncertainty, and despair. And it is in this context, that I am committed to conversations that shift the existing paradigm around how we deal with the many forms of domestic violence while taking active steps in the global movement to emancipate women and girls from oppression. It is my belief that transforming the idea of violence in our homes to eliminate the ‘stigma‘ and difficulty around bringing it to light, is a key element in achieving the safety and healing towards living the best version of ourselves possible, something we all desire as our fundamental human right.
I am delighted for this opportunity to partner with all of you in a collective spirit to cause a shift in attitudes and perceptions, and to influence a new generation of change-makers creating a harmonious world based on equality and justice that we all envision. I sincerely thank you for your dedicated support in sustaining DHF over the years and encourage all of you to continually follow ‘your’ heart and engage with us in this work as a community moving forward. Please share your thoughts and ideas with us.
Neelofer Chaudry, M.Sc.
Domestic Harmony Foundation
Board of Directors:
From humble beginnings, the Domestic Harmony Foundation has grown into a sizable organization and a known support group for victims of domestic violence.
Working collectively through passion, teamwork, and dedication, the DHF Board of Directors help to steer the Foundation’s mission, strategic programming, and growth. Our Board actively assists in DHF’s development through regular meetings, project-based support, brainstorming, and sharing resources. The current Board members enhance DHF’s work by bringing forward a diversity of professional and life experiences.
Shaida Khan, Past Executive Director
Mrs. Shaida Khan graduated from Sophia Polytechnic University in Mumbai, India with a Bachelor’s degree in Hotel Administration and Food Technology. Since arriving in the United States with her husband, Shaida has been a valuable member of her community and a dedicated volunteer at the Islamic Center of Long Island (ICLI) in Westbury, NY.
Shaida has a passion for learning about different cultures and religions and has developed a reputation as a bridge builder between the ICLI and other communities of faith. She is regularly involved in interfaith dialogues and meetings with Mothers group, especially post 9/11. In 2003 she received the ICLI’s President’s Community Service Volunteer Award.
From 1993-1995, Shaida helped the ICLI sponsor eight Bosnian high school students resettle in the United States. She helped place them with families on Long Island and mentored the students until they graduated from high school.
Shaida is now the Executive Director of Domestic Harmony Foundation, having served as the Chairperson for the Domestic Harmony Committee of the ICLI from 2000 – 2004. Under Shaida’s leadership, DHF has been recognized as a model organization within the South Asian and Muslim communities in Long Island. Her commitment and dedication to end domestic violence has won praise both within and outside of the community.
In 2004, she served as a Board member of the Long Island Fund for Women and Girls, which funds programs for the improvement of lives of women as well as women’s philanthropy.
Shaida Khan was the recipient of the County Executive’s 2009 Women of Distinction Award in recognition of her service, dedication, and commitment for making a difference in the Long Island Community.
Kushalata Jayakar Ahmed, MD
Kushalata Jayakar Ahmed is a pediatrician and psychiatrist, practicing in Long Island and Brooklyn, NY. She was born in India and graduated with an MD degree from Bombay University, India. She completed her postgraduate training in Pediatrics from The New York Hospital of Cornell University medical center, which was followed by training in adult and child psychiatry in New York. Twenty years ago, as an Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at the Down State Medical Center, SUNY, she established and directed a program (Brooklyn Family Center) for child victims of sexual and physical abuse. At the Queens District Attorney’s office, Kushal ran a training program for the legal personnel of the Special Victims Unit, dealing exclusively with victims of violence. Kushal was responsible for running a treatment program as a Medical Director for addiction for the adolescents at the Long Island Jewish Medical Center, Department of Psychiatry.
Kushal is a consultant at the South Asian Council for Social Services (SACSS). She has provided services for the families and survivors of 9/11 for the SACSS and Port Authority of NY & NJ.
Kushal is a remarkable woman and one of the founding members of the ICLI (Islamic Center of Long Island). She also assisted in establishing DHF as an advocacy and treatment program for victims of domestic violence. She continues to be active in this program as a consultant psychiatrist and an educator for the community.
Kushal is happily married and lives in Great Neck, Long Island with her husband, and near her daughter, son-in-law, and two grand children. She has private practices in Great Neck and in Brooklyn.
Zubeida Lunat was born in Bombay, India. She graduated with a B.S., majoring in English and Education. She came to U.S. in 1973 along with her husband Ibrahim Lunat, a chartered accountant. As civic minded and compassionate individuals, the husband and wife duo became involved early on in South Asian community affairs and support of Islamic institutions by volunteering time and donating funds and quickly became respected members of the community.
After the sudden demise of her husband in 1999, Zubeida did not shrink to a widow with no role to play in society or aspirations of her own; as can be expected of an immigrant South Asian woman even in U.S. Instead, she went about life making a diverse group of friends and doing things that made her happy all the while being a pillar of strength for her family and compassionate towards those who came to her for help.
Over the years, Zubeida Lunat has volunteered and put in countless hours of service to The Muslim Center of New York, Islamic Center of Long Island and Domestic Harmony Foundation. She has been a valued member of ICLI, serving as a Vice –President, Treasurer, Board member and has been active in its fundraising efforts. Zubeida is one of the founding members of Domestic Harmony Foundation. She is an integral and invaluable part of DHF serving as an advisor to members, diligent Treasurer and most effective fundraiser.
Zubeida is admired by all who know her for her quite strength, integrity, compassion, dedication and commitment to a task undertaken. She is a great role model for her son and eight year old grand daughter.
Homaira Mamoor is a graduate of St. Joseph’s College in New York majoring in Business Administration and pursuing her executive MBA. Homaira is a member of the Islamic Center of long Island, has served on its Board of Directors, and is an active member of the Domestic Harmony Foundation.
Homaira is a member of a Multi-faith Forum, building bridges with other faiths in Long Island. Homaira’s personal experiences as a woman and mother, and working with her native Afghan women’s community here in the U.S and back home in Afghanistan, inspired her to work for uprooted women’s rights. For seven years, she served as a Board Member of Women for Afghan Women (WAW), a collection of Afghan and non-Afghan women from the New York area who are committed to the human rights of Afghan women. Her essay, “Building Community Across Difference,” was published by Thunder’s Mouth Press/Nation Books in Nothing Sacred: Women Respond to Religious Fundamentalism and Terror, and by Global Publishing at St. Martin’s Press in Women for Afghan Women: Shattering Myths and Claiming The Future.
Homaira was the recipient of the St. Joseph’s College prestigious “Esse Non Videri Award,” named after the College’s motto: “To be, not to seem,” a Non-Violence Award presented annually to individuals who exemplify compassion, social engagement and spirituality in the pursuit of social justice and peace.
Homaira is happily married and the mother of three beautiful daughters, aged 17, 15, and 12 years and lives in West Islip, New York.
Amal Wahib was born and raised in Port Said, Egypt. She came to Long Island, NY in 1970. In Egypt, she earned an Elementary School Teacher Credential from The Institute of Teachers of Port Said. Amal has an Associate’s degree in Child Care from Nassau Community College. She received her Bachelor of Arts with a dual degree in Psychology and Visual Arts from SUNY Old Westbury in 1994. In 1996, she earned her Master of Arts degree in Creative Art Therapy from the school of Counseling, Research, Special Education and Rehabilitation of Hofstra University.
Amal is a Licensed Art Therapist. As a member of the Domestic Harmony Foundation, Amal specializes in multi-cultural and domestic violence counseling. She had worked as a prenatal coordinator, child health advocate, and educator. She provides art therapy to children, families, and senior citizens.
Haseena Mooppan – Board Chair
Haseena Mooppan born and raised in Kerala, India came to U.S. in 1977 to join her physician husband upon completing her B.S. in Zoology. After a brief stint in banking, she chose to be a homemaker to raise her children. Over the years, she volunteered for many cultural organizations. She is passionate about politics and believes in the collective role of community, corporation, family and individual in the making of a society by sharing responsibilities and accountability. She has been with DHF since 2008 and hopes to have the organization take lead in promoting non-violent communication methods starting with Middle School students.
A practicing Muslim, she finds reasonable answers to her questions about God, human existence and conditions in the simplicity of Islam. She loves tennis, reading and to attend sporting and cultural events. She feels blessed to have a wide group of friends, a supportive husband, two adult sons, a daughter-in-law, a year old grand-daughter and a loving extended family in U.S. and India.
Rafia Hamid, Ph. D
Dr. Rafia Hamid is a New York State licensed psychologist, a certified school psychologist, and holds board certification from the American Board of School Neuropsychology. Dr. Hamid completed her doctoral studies in clinical psychology from Adelphi University and training from Kings County Hospital Center, Personal Counseling Center at Brooklyn College, and Albert Einstein College of Medicine. Currently Dr. Hamid is on the clinical faculty at Adelphi University, and has a small private practice in Long Island.
Dr. Hamid has been a volunteer member of Domestic Harmony Foundation since the past twelve years. Her research interests include bicultural identity, acculturation, marriage patterns, and domestic violence within the minority/immigrant communities. Her dissertation addressed acculturation dissonance between parents and children of South Asian origin and its impact on their psychological well-being. Dr. Hamid has authored several articles/book chapters and made numerous presentations at local and national conferences on mental health needs of families from diverse backgrounds.
Anila Midha, MD
A physician by profession, Dr. Anila Midha has been a trailblazer in introducing Indian high end fashion to American audiences and has represented well-known and respected Indian designers in the US for the past fifteen years. She organized and choreographed fashion shows in New York, Atlanta, Raleigh (North Carolina), Seattle, San Francisco and Los Angeles for Pratham, the largest educational non-profit organization with a global presence. Anila Midha is the Founder and President of South Asian American Women’s Alliance, a non- profit organization that promotes the education of STEM subjects among South Asian American women and gives scholarships to deserving female students in high schools.
Dr. Midha has been an active member and community leader on Long Island for over 25 years. She is on the Executive Board of South Asian Political Action Committee along with Domestic Harmony Foundation. She is an advisor for Arya Samaj of Long Island. She has been the President of Five Towns Indian Association for several years. Under her leadership, FTIA organized Gangajal Project in 2004 to raise funds for water harvesting in Andhra Pradesh, India. She was elected to be President of India Association of Long Island in 2008 and 2009 after being an active member serving as the editor of IALI newsletter and annual Journals for several years. With her at the helm, IALI organized Indoor India-Fest for the first time and it was a huge success.
She was honored at Nassau County Executive Mother’s Day Brunch celebration in 2013 by Edward Mangano; at the Indian Republic Day Celebration in Town of Hempstead by Supervisor Kate Murray; Asian American Heritage Celebration by Nassau County Executive Edward Mangano in May 2015. She is married to Prof. Subash Midha and is the proud mother of two daughters, a lawyer and a high school math teacher.
Sabina is currently the Branch Manager in Peoples United Bank and has been in the Financial Industry for the most part of her career. Sabina is successful in her management role for over a decade and prides herself on providing exceptional customer service with a laser-like focus on the needs of the community that she serves on both consumer and business sides. Her clients include professionals, entrepreneurs from all industries and all consumer relationships. She services her clients from their day to day banking up to and including their Commercial and Consumer Lending needs and planning and saving through various Investment and Insurance services.
In addition to being a banker, Sabina has chosen to serve the community in various capacities. She is an Executive Founding Member of the Hyderabad Cultural Association and serves on the Board of the Domestic Harmony Foundation. Additionally, she also volunteers and participates at different levels with other local community organizations like IALI and SAAWA. Sabina was recognized in the past for her community involvement and support by the Hicksville Chamber of Commerce, Indian Association of Long Island, Nassau County Executive, Ed Mangano and Nassau County Legislative, Rose Marie Walker.
Sabina is a proud parent of three wonderful children Fatima, Faiza, and Nasser. Sabina was born and raised in Hyderabad, India and has had the good fortune of living the American Dream for the past 27 years.
Shagufta graduated with a Masters Degree in Biochemistry from the University of Punjab in Lahore, Pakistan and came to the United States in 1977 where she completed another Master of Science degree in Biochemistry from New York University. A clinical scientist, she works full time as a director for laboratory quality management for the Catholic Health System on Long Island. Inspired by her daughter’s wonderful experience interning as a summer legal intern, Shagufta began volunteering with DHF for the last five years and has become a valuable member of the Board of Directors.
Thamina Aziz was born and raised in Rahim Yar Khan, Pakistan. She completed her B.A. in social and religious studies in Pakistan and moved to the United States in 1984 and has since traveled and lived abroad for some years. She has served as a member for the Islamic Association of Long Island in Selden, NY for over a decade and as chairperson for the Sister’s Affairs Committee. She is always seeking out ways to give back to the community and is involved in community building projects that assist underprivileged members of society. Thamina is known for effectively organizing people to come together for community events supporting important causes. She is also involved in school building initiatives in rural underserved areas of Pakistan. Thamina is a natural fit and asset to the Board of Directors of DHF.
Tehmina Tirmizi is the new staff member at the Domestic Harmony Foundation. She has a master’s degree in social work from the School of Social Welfare at Stony Brook University. As a social justice advocate, her knowledge, skills, and values all contribute towards recognizing the framework of oppression, in addition to, critical analysis of systems and policies that create barriers for certain populations. She respects the mission of DHF and is very happy to be a part of the DHF team. By joining DHF, she is committed towards the fundamental vision of a more empathetic and meaningful society.
In addition to her advocacy work, she is a mother of 3 boys who “love” her as their teacher…and as a dedicated social worker, she aspires to live by the words of the famous poet, Rumi: “’Be a lamp, or a lifeboat, or a ladder. Help someone’s soul heal. Walk out of your house like a shepherd.”
Young Professional Committee Members:
Rabya Khalid, is actively involved with Domestic Harmony Foundation. She works as a labor & delivery nurse. Currently she is in graduate school and pursuing a Nurse Practitioner degree. She has a compassionate heart that longs to help women and children. Being a South Asian and from an immigrant family, she understands the plight of women from those cultures and therefore likes to give back to the community by helping women and children dealing with family violence.
Talha S. Pasha
Talha S. Pasha was born in Sargodha, Pakistan and was raised in Queens, NY where he completed most of his early education. He graduated summa cum laude from the New York Institute of Technology with a Bachelor’s Degree in Behavioral Science/Criminal Justice, also serving as the President of the honor society Alpha Phi Sigma. Currently he is pursuing his law degree with aspirations towards working in international law, specifically human rights. He is making his contributions to the Domestic Harmony Foundation to bring attention to and make domestic violence an issue of the past.
Ammar Hamid is currently an undergraduate student studying Neural Science at New York University. His prior experiences with community outreach include co-leading the DHF Summer Youth Leadership Program and the Islamic Center of NYU Young Men’s Initiative. His interests include social activism and interfaith dialogue.
Tommy Inouye is a graduate from Columbia University School of Engineering and Applied Science. He majored in Computer Science and is currently working as a senior software engineer. His experience with his local Grassroots program has made him a very strong advocate for community outreach and social activism. In his spare time, he spends his time learning new technologies and spending time with his friends and family.
Rubab Rehman graduated from Columbia University with a degree in Economics and Psychology. She currently works for an insurance company AXA but is planning to attend graduate school for Computer Science in the Fall. Rubab is a recreational runner but also enjoys trying out new fitness activities, such as rowing or kickboxing. Her favorite DHF event is the annual walkathon.
Maisha graduated with a Bachelor’s in politics with focus on political theory and American politics. She also completed additional coursework on philosophy and psychology and served as the president of Columbia Model Congress. Later, she completed her Master’s at the University of Western Ontario. Her Master’s thesis focused on political theory and international security. Currently, Maisha works in the field of environmental activism and is thrilled to return to her original passion with DHF – women’s activism against domestic violence.
Tehreem Rehman is an MD/MPH candidate at Yale/Johns Hopkins. She is invested in addressing the impact of adversity and trauma on psychopathology, clinical and community interventions for violence, and the relationship between healthcare provider biases and health inequity. She has previously served as a New York State Certified Crisis Counselor and currently serves as the first student member of the National Physicians Alliance’s Policy Committee.
Samia Mustafa is a current undergraduate at New York University pursuing a double major of Philosophy and Physics in the College of Arts and Sciences. She is currently on the pre-law track. Samia’s prior work in the community involves leading the DHF’s Summer Youth Leadership Program and various other volunteering programs.
Board of Advisory Members:
- Rizwan Qureshi
- Nazli Chaudhry
- Dr. Margaret Abraham
- Rev. Thomas Goodhue
- Sudha Acharya
- Donna Schreiber
Webmaster & Graphic Designer:
Zaiba Mustafa is a senior Web Developer & Graphic Designer. She has 16 years of experience in Web Development and Graphic Design. She is also certified in Microsoft Office Applications. She has worked at Al-Noor School Brooklyn, as a Computer Science Teacher for seven years. She is currently an active Freelancer.