About Sajda Mughal
After having narrowly escaped death during the London terrorist attack on 7th July 2005, Sajda left her corporate background with management consultancies and investment banking to now lead the multi-award winning women's charity JAN Trust in its work to educate communities to tackle extremism, marginalisation and violence against women and girls.
The daughter of Ugandan refugees expelled by the dictator Idi Amin, Sajda is passionate in empowering those from under-represented groups (particularly Muslim women) and provides a voice for women, combats violence against women, working towards countering terrorism, and providing young people with the tools to achieve their ambitions in creating a better and safe society. For over the past decade, she has supported thousands of women and young people across the UK.
Sajda develops and delivers programmes locally, nationally and internationally, focusing on issues such as women's' rights, countering extremism, education and integration. She has led an innovative, multi-award winning national project - 'Against Forced Marriages', which works at the community-level to prevent cases, support victims and raise awareness and eradicate the issue. The programme assisted thousands of women and girls across the UK. Sajda also published a report on forced marriages entitled "Consent Matters - Towards Effective Prevention of Forced Marriages within the Pakistani Community in the UK" which was launched by JAN Trust in the House of Lords.
In 2012, Sajda also published a report on online radicalisation - "Internet Extremism: Working towards a Community Solution", which explored the issue of online radicalisation and discussed UK based case studies. She provides recommendations which draw upon her extensive experience working with Muslim young people, women and mothers in the UK. The report also provides effective community led prevention strategies including her highly acclaimed unique 'Web Guardians™' programme. The programme is the first of its kind and works with marginalised and Muslim women and mothers in equipping them with the ability to safeguard their children and loved ones from online and offline extremism. The programme has been delivered across the UK and has catered for thousands of Muslim mothers and young people where mothers have now taken an active role in preventing their children from following the pathway of extremism and being radicalised online.
In January 2019, Sajda was appointed as a Special Adviser to the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan's, Countering Violent Extremism programme. Sajda offers expert advice to the Mayor to ensure effective policy is in place to counter violent extremism. Sajda uses her decade long experience in the field as well as her experience of surviving terrorism to inform policy and ensure that the capital is a safe place for all.
Sajda's work and activism has received national and international recognition and she has been profiled in the Guardian, the Big Issue, Cosmopolitan, Red and Time Out Magazine. She has received a number of distinguished awards and was named 2015's "Ultimate Woman" by Cosmopolitan Magazine.
In 2015 she also was awarded an OBE in the Queens New Years Honours List 2015 for her services and work towards community cohesion and interfaith dialogue. The Prince of Wales, His Royal Highness Prince Charles presented Sajda with her award at Buckingham Palace. She is the youngest Asian and Muslim female to receive this honour.
In November 2018, Sajda won the prestigious 'Campaigner of the Year' 2018 award from the European Diversity Awards where over 60,000 nominations were received from across the UK.
Sajda has written comment pieces and appeared in printed press including the Guardian, the Independent, the Telegraph, the Evening Standard, the Mirror, the Sun, Closer Magazine and the Huffington Post.
She has appeared in a wide range of press including Channel 4 News, Sky News, CNN, ITV News, BBC News, BBC Radio 4's 'Today' Programme, BBC Woman's Hour, BBC Victoria Derbyshire Show, Channel 5 and ITV's Lorraine Show.
Sajda is a member of a number of Advisory Groups for private companies, local authorities and with the Government including being part of the Prime Minister's Community Engagement Forum.
She is an expert advisor on preventing and countering extremism with the online safety platform Internet Matters and is a member of the UK Council for Child Internet Safety (UKCCIS). Sajda has also co-founded the Survivors Against Terror network to assist and support survivors as well as influencing policy.
She is regularly asked to speak on her 7/7 experience and countering extremism at conferences, universities, colleges and schools both at home and internationally.
Sajda's work has also been noted and commended by various key dignitaries including the current Prime Minister, Rt Hon Theresa May MP and the former Prime Minister, David Cameron, celebrities and various other Ministers.
Sajda Mughal left her high-flying career in investment banking after her near death experience in the London 7/7 bombings. She was on the Piccadilly line train which saw the largest number of people die in the attacks. Having survived the trauma, she is now leading the JAN Trust, a charity which is devoted to community dialogue and helping disadvantaged groups, especially women, overcome discrimination and prejudice. She has done a very remarkable job building bridges, managing a number of programmes, local, nationally and internationally.