City Circle: gender equality in the 21st century Circle is hosting a panel discussion on  Friday 20th March 6.45pm – 8.30pm at Abrar House, 45 Crawford Place, W1H 4LP on women in positions of leadership within Christianity and Islam.

“The role of women is one of the most challenging issues facing Christianity and Islam today. But why is the idea of women in positions of religious leadership so controversial?

Why aren’t more women breaking through the glass ceiling into positions of leadership?

Join us for a panel discussion as we explore questions of women’s representation, participation and leadership from the perspective of Islam and Christianity.”

Speakers include Revd Lucy Winkett, Khola Hasan and Shahin Ashraf MBE.

More information on City Circle’s website, Facebook page or by emailing

Women and Faith at the WOW Festival 7-9 March

dont classify meIf you are going to the Women of the World Festival at the Southbank Centre. SE1, on Sunday 9 March, come along to the Women and Faith session at 1pm.wow_series_2014_1

Jude Kelly (Festival Director) says the WOW Festival “celebrates everything girls and women are doing to change the world for the better”.

WOW has been liaising with the Women’s Interfaith Network to put together an excellent panel of speakers which includes Dina Brawer from the Jewish Orthodox Feminist Alliance, the Church of England’s Reverend Sally Hitchiner, Polly Harrar, founder of The Sharan Project, Hudda K and Sofia Niazi from OOMK, with Catriona Robertson, convener of LBFN, chairing the session.

Here’s the trailer.

Spirit of Womanhood art exhibition

The Women’s Interfaith Network is celebrating its 10th anniversary and International Women’s Day with an art exhibition in the Galleries at the OXO Tower Wharf on 20- 30 March.

The artworks on display have been selected from nearly 1,500 submissions from women across the world, including Tracey Emin.  Curator Rosalind Parker (of the Meridian Institute for Culture and Dialogue & previously involved in 3FF’s Urban Dialogues exhibition) says, “This is a platform for female artists, both established and emerging, to engage in discussion of gender, faith and spirituality.”

Women from communities across London will find this an exciting event.

“My Great Great Grandfather was a slave in the Ottoman Empire.

My Father was a Turkish Cypriot. He was a Muslim who grew up in a Greek village and spoke Turkish with a Greek accent.

My Mother is British. She grew up in London’s East End. She comes from a family of long time Gypsies.

Me – I am an international artist. I exhibit all over the world.

I am very happy to take part in this Exhibition.”

Tracey Emin

winThere’s also a Voices of Womanhood Festival Day (£15 for a day ticket) with an eclectic programme of films, speakers and panels on Sunday 23rd March 11am – 9pm at the Roxy Bar and Screen, 128 Borough High Street, SE1 1LB.

Download the flyer for details and book your place by emailing Marion Waruguru at

Spirit of Womanhood

spirit of womanhood picThe Women’s Interfaith Network has put out a call for entries to their 10th anniversary art exhibition next year.  Spirit of Womanhood will be held at London’s Oxo Tower on 25 – 31 March, to coincide with International Women’s Day 2014 – dates to add to your forward planner.

Entry is open to female artists of any age, culture, belief or non-belief.  Submissions are invited via by 30 November.  WIN says

“The exhibition will provide a unique platform for female artists from diverse backgrounds to celebrate their creativity and spiritual journeys.”

Pass the flyer on to female artists in your communities – this is bound to be a significant event within the art world and will draw visitors from across London and the UK.

For more information, contact the Curator, Rosalind Parker.

Coffee & cupcakes in Merton

Merton Council is supporting Merton Interfaith Forum’s Hospitality Month – places of worship opening their doors, offering refreshments and welcoming people from different religious traditions and the wider community.  The next event is this Sunday morning at Immanuel House and all Merton’s religious groups are invited to host an event – contact Evereth Willis on 020-8545 4637.

Women's Interfaith Coffee with Mrs Geetha Maheshwaran (second from left) at the Shree Ghanapathy Temple in 2011

Do you have a women’s group at your place of worship in Merton?  Would you like to invite women from your local church, mosque, temple, synagogue, gurdwara or community group over for coffee?

The Council has provided all the equipment you need (hot drinks dispensers, tea, coffee, biscuits) for Women’s Interfaith Coffee Mornings.  They were a lot of fun last year.  There’s also a banner to use for the occasion – all you need to do is put the word around and add cupcakes!

The first of these is on 9th May at the Baitul Futuh Mosque.  Download the Women’s Interfaith Coffee info sheet if you’d like to host a coffee morning, or contact Evereth Willis at Merton Council on 020 8545 4637.  The coffee mornings and Hospitality Week are part of this year’s Olympic Truce activities, building trust across the host city during 2012.

Stitching lives together

Not the usual stitch ‘n bitch, but in the same tradition of women getting together and producing wonderful handicrafts while enjoying each others’ company – this is a great project.

“This is a great chance for people to polish up embroidery skills and to learn about different cultures and faiths at the same time,” says Bridging Arts director Susan Roberts. “It’s a way of forging new friendships and making connections that you might never have dreamed of.”

The project has already started, but if you’re female and live or work in Brent, contact Susan and see if there are any spare places.

Bridging Arts are also running inter cultural projects in other parts of London.