MEWSo aims to defend and protect women from violence both at home and in the wider community
MEWSo at London New Year's Day Parade 2019

The first day of the year started with quite a bang, as thousands of people gathered in central London to watch the annual New Year’s Day Parade and MEWSo was there representing Westminster borough. Westminster Adult Education Service (WAES) won the borough bid for Westminster to be part of the London New Year’s Day Parade 2019. MEWSo was asked by WAES to represent the different nationalities and cultures that can be found in Westminster with the world in a suitcase theme.

It was an extremely cold morning and some of our amazing and dedicated women got up early to be with us and represent Westminster's diversity. The clothes worn were made and donated to MEWSo for the day by a talented MEWSo volunteer, Molouk Vakili. The clothes are in the styles of traditional Middle Eastern dress including Kurdish and Iranian styles.

"The most revolutionary thing one can do is always to proclaim loudly what is happening."
Rosa Luxemburg: 5 March 1871 – 15 January 1919

19th January 2019 was the centenary anniversary of Rosa Luxemburg's brutal death by proto-Nazi's in Berlin. She was a Jewish Polish-born German Marxist theorist, philosopher, economist, anti-war activist, and revolutionary socialist. Rosa Luxemburg is a model for feminists of all times in her passionate commitment both to understanding the nature of our oppressive system — and most important, to changing it — and for pursuing her own political and personal life without concern for what women were and were not supposed to do.
News at MEWSo
Christmas at MEWSo
MEWSo staff and volunteers got together to celebrate Christmas and the end of a fantastic year at MEWSo!
MEWSo Services
Current Services

Start Date: Every Wednesday
Time: 10:00am-12:00pm
Location: Penfold Community Hub, Westminster
Refreshments and childcare provided

Advice and Guidance

One-to-one sessions by appointment
Available Monday - Friday 10am-4pm
Location: Durham Road Resource Centre, Finsbury Park
Languages: Farsi, Kurdish, Arabic and English

One-to-one sessions by appointment
Available Wednesday 10am-4pm
Location: Church Street Neighbourhood Centre, Cherwell House, Penfold Street NW8 8PT
Languages: Farsi and English

Olive Club
Every Monday
Time: 10:00am-1:00pm 
Location: Wood Green Library, Haringey
Languages: English, Farsi and Kurdish
Activities: Social club with a variety of activities specified by service users
Refreshments provided

Olive Club
Every Saturday
Time: 10:00am-1:00pm 
Location: Durham Road Resource Centre, Finsbury Park
Languages: English, Farsi, Kurdish and Arabic
Activities: Social club with a variety of activities specified by service users
Refreshments provided
Children welcome!

Olive Club
Every Sunday
Time: 10:00am-1:00pm
Location: Edmonton Green Shopping Centre, Enfield
Languages: English, Farsi, Kurdish and Arabic
Activities: Social club with a variety of activities specified by service users
Refreshments provided

Body Balance 

Every Monday
Time: 10am - 12pm
Location: Penfold Community Hub, Westminster
Activities: Increase core strength, flexibility and a calm mind so the body is brought into balance.
Refreshments and childcare provided

Every Thursday
Time: 10am - 12pm
Locations: Finsbury Park Community Rooms, Islington
Activities: Mat and chair based Pilates for beginner and ability to speak to an advisor on health related issues
Languages: Farsi, Arabic and English
Refreshments provided
Future Services

Healthy Eating Workshop
Date: Wednesday 30th January 
Time: 11:30am - 2:30pm
Location: Hilldrop Community Centre, Islington
Languages: Arabic and English
Activities: Introduction in how to use limited ingredients to cook healthy meals. Participants will be involved in making hummus and other foods.
Lunch and childcare provided

Introduction to Yoga
Date: Thursday 28th February
Time: 11am - 2pm 
Location: Hilldrop Community Centre, Islington
Languages: Arabic and English
Activities: Introduction to mat based Yoga including some meditation.
Lunch and childcare provided

All our services are free however you must book to secure a place.

Booking and further information contact:
Phone: 07958145666

We also offer weekly befriending and one-to-one English Language sessions with a volunteer. If you would like support learning English or just want a friendly person to chat to please contact us.
MEWSo celebrated its Annual General Meeting with its dedicated team of management committee members, staff and volunteers as well as welcoming two new management committee members!
MEWSo Exercise Instructor: Hanan Hadeed
My name is Hanan, I've been a movement and wellbeing coach since 2011 and I'm fascinated by the capacity within each one of us to heal and empower herself. I've experienced this personally having healed from a long list of chronic conditions including: severe back pain/several herniated discs, asthma, eczema, and digestive issues.
In my work with MEWSO I deliver workshops where I share tools & techniques for realising this knowledge for yourself - enabling you to become more connected and in tune with your body-mind-spirit, so that (whether it is health related or otherwise) you can make the best choices at any given point in time. This is not an encouragement to self-diagnose and definitely not one to self-medicate. Especially in cases of any serious conditions, one is always encouraged to see her medical GP first and to follow conventional medical advice. However, as many conditions nowadays are lifestyle related, this approach is about learning the tools needed to understand the body-mind, and to assist it in the daily process of healing itself- alongside any conventional medical advice you may be following.
My ultimate wish is to help others enjoy life more, with more energy, less pain, and overall better health. Our sessions at MEWSO prioritise gentle movement, breathing, and meditation methods aimed at restoring the body's balance and energising its own capacity to heal. Most of these tools are sourced from eastern wisdoms traditions such as yoga, tai chi, and Qigong, but also from more recent European methods such as Feldenkrais and Pilates.
It is an honour for me to be offering this to other women through the supportive sisterhood that is MEWSO.
Leading the Movement: Women, Power, Change 2019

On January 28th 2019, Halaleh Taheri, Executive Director of MEWSo, attended the 'Leading the Movement: Women, Power, Change 2019' hosted by Clore Social Leadership and the Social Change Agency. It was a hopeful and ambitious all-day conference to develop and share vital skills for building power and establish a shared vision for the future of the feminist movement.

This groundbreaking women’s leadership conference brought together established and emerging feminist leaders from Clore’s Social Leadership’s Women and Girls Programme with new allies and leading figures in the women’s movement.  

Leading the Movement: Women, Power, Change 2019 was a powerful step towards building a movement that offers hope to all women and girls, the courage to challenge the status quo and the power to change the world. 

'I am one of the lucky ones': Rahaf al-Qunun vows to defend women's rights

The Saudi teenager, who drew international headlines after fleeing an abusive family situation, landed in Toronto over the weekend after the Canadian government accepted the United Nations' request to grant her asylum and fast-tracked her resettlement.

In her first public statement since arriving in Canada, the 18-year-old thanked her supporters on Tuesday while acknowledging that many Saudi women may not be as lucky.

Read more here.

Documentaries to Watch

Free Documentaries
BBC Iplayer
Is this Sexual Harassment? 

2018 saw the downfall of a series of famous men in the face of allegations of sexual harassment. The issue has never received so much media attention, but the debate about what is and isn't appropriate in the workplace continues. A hand on someone's back, complimenting their fragrance - is this a colleague being friendly, or are they crossing a line? What constitutes sexual harassment? 

Watch here

Bats, Balls and Bradford Girls

The first all Asian girls’ cricket team train for their last tournament together. Now they’ve left school, will outside pressures of life get in the way?
Watch here

Suffragette Allies

Suffrage campaigns were led by women, but some men, such as activist Fred Pethick-Lawrence, who was put in gaol, and MPs John Stuart Mill and Keir Hardie, played supporting roles.

Watch here

Radio 1 Stories: About Bloody Time

Meet the young activists uniting to help girls who can't afford period products, and to remove the stigma of menstruation.

Watch here

Our World: Tunisia - A Women's Share
Since the country's 2011 protests sparked the Arab Spring, Tunisia has been the country most willing to publicly engage with the issue of women's rights. Now, with the President leading the way, Tunisia's Sharia based inheritance laws, under which women are only entitled to half of what men receive, are being challenged. But, there is fierce resistance from Tunisia's conservative religious community. They've been blocking reform efforts for more than 30 years. Nada Issa finds out if the time has finally come for Tunisia's women to get their fair share. 

Watch here

Kate Adies Women of World War One

Distinguished war reporter Kate Adie examines the impact of women's work on the Home Front during the First World War. 

Innovations included the first women's police force, women's football and female surgeons operating on men. Adie argues that what truly mattered though was whether these changes in women's lives were long-lasting or viewed as 'only for the duration'.

Watch here
Calendar Dates
6th February - International Day of Zero Tolerance to Female Genital Mutilation

Female genital mutilation (FGM) comprises all procedures that involve altering or injuring the female genitalia for non-medical reasons and is recognized internationally as a violation of the human rights of girls and women.

11th February - International Day of Women and Girls in Science

Science and gender equality are both vital for the achievement of the internationally agreed development goals. Over the past 15 years, the global community has made a lot of effort in inspiring and engaging women and girls in science. Unfortunately, women and girls continued to be excluded from participating fully in science. 

20th February - World Day of Social Justice 

Social justice is an underlying principle for peaceful and prosperous coexistence within and among nations. We uphold the principles of social justice when we promote gender equality or the rights of indigenous peoples and migrants. We advance social justice when we remove barriers that people face because of gender, age, race, ethnicity, religion, culture or disability.

1st March - Zero Discrimination Day

No one should ever be discriminated against because of their age, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, disability, race, ethnicity, language, health (including HIV) status, geographical location, economic status or migrant status, or for any other reason. Unfortunately, however, discrimination continues to undermine efforts to achieve a more just and equitable world. Many people face discrimination every day based on who they are or what they do.

8th March - International Women's Day

International Women’s Day is a time to reflect on progress made, to call for change and to celebrate acts of courage and determination by ordinary women who have played an extraordinary role in the history of their countries and communities.

21st March - International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination

Promoting tolerance, inclusion, unity and respect for diversity in the context of combating racial discrimination.

Our mewsletter is issued every two months, if you require more up to date information on our services please visit our website or contact Kate Oboussier at
If you would like to write an article, share a personal experience, give feedback on a MEWSo service or advertise your organisation in next month's Mewsletter
Please contact: Kate Oboussier
Copyright © 2019 Middle Eastern Women and Society Organisation, All rights reserved.

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