The Castro Theatre is one of the oldest and historical theatres here in San Francisco. In one of the most vibrant and colorful districts of the city, it only makes sense that this iconic theatre showcases colorful, thoughtful and beautiful works from local to global film makers.
I’ve come here many times to check out foreign films and film festivals over the years before moving abroad. Since moving back, I’ve been anxious to watch a screening here again. Most recently, I’ve watched movies during the Arab Film Festival and have not left disappointed.
I can’t imagine a more beautiful theatre for a movie buff to appreciate here in the city than I have at the Castro Theatre. I can’t wait to go back!
Throwback Thursday to accidentally on purpose finding sweetness at a classic spot in Burlingame. Royal Donut has been around longer than many of the eateries on famed Burlingame Avenue. Grab yourself a chocolate old-fashioned today!
Today, I read one of the most saddest emails I could’ve read… Ms. Alice Nashashibi of San Francisco had passed away.
Ms. Nashashibi is one of the main pillars of existence for the Arab Cultural and Community Center (ACCC). Since it’s doors first opened, she had been an active and supportive community member. She never missed an event, no matter how big or small. In my years working and volunteering at the ACCC, she was always there! Every meeting, every get together, every banquet, ever festival… I simply couldn’t imagine the image of an event without the presence and contributions of Ms. Nashashibi.
She supported every community member, made an effort to always greet everyone in the room and had a contagious, beautiful smile. She had a wonderful presence that will surely be deeply missed.
In my eyes, Ms. Nashashibi is an icon of what we Arab Americans aspire to be in our communities across the country.
Thank you Alice… as always, for everything!
If you are in the Bay Area, services for Alice Nashashibi will be held this weekend as follows:
Sunday, March 3rd: Viewing at Duggans in Daly City from 3 to 9 pm with an open forum starting at 7pm for community members to share their thoughts.
Monday, March 4th: Funeral Mass starting at 12pm at the St. Thomas Moore Church in San Francisco. There will be an evening reception from 6-9pm at her home.
When I was a young girl, a part of me always wished there was a place where I could be with other young Muslims. Please don’t get me wrong, I loved most of my time in school with extremely diverse surroundings, but I always found myself to be the only Muslim in the room. There was a handful of occasions where I was bullied for being the only Muslim, looking weird and being just plain different.
Thus a part of that young girl always yearned to be in a place where people prayed like her, understood her love for Hijab and helped her learn the Holy Quran. A place where a Muslim girl who looked weird and was just plain different was embraced. That place did not exist in this young girls time.
I was finishing up grad school when I first came across the San Francisco Islamic School (SFIS) a few years ago. That’s when the young girl within me smiled from ear to ear! It wasn’t long before I joined as a volunteer teacher myself and having one of the most amazing experiences of my life! I looked forward to planning my lesson plans every week, waking up early Sunday mornings and seeing my students gather at Mercy High School where SFIS was welcomed.
This non-profit educational initiative, started by a handful of community members, meet every Sunday in San Francisco where a diverse group of students from all parts of the Bay Area gathered to learn the Arabic Language, the Holy Quran and Islamic studies. From a handful of students to the creation of a waiting list, the demand has grown bigger than ever imagined.
As of today, SFIS has become more than a Sunday school with…
A weekly structured coursework of the above mentioned areas
Multiple field-trips and activities on a regular basis
Daily tutoring and mentoring programs for all subjects
Adult education courses and seminars focusing on Islam, health and family well-being
Realizing the need for a full-time Islamic faith based school in San Francisco, board members worked tirelessly for years to develop a successful strategic plan. From becoming accredited by the education department to finding a suitable place to call home, the plan is now in motion.
We are now closer to the dream!
An offer on a beautiful facility on the borders of San Francisco and Daly City has been made. This is a prime location making it accessible to students from both within and outside San Francisco. It houses eight decent sized classrooms, offices, a full functioning kitchen, an auditorium, a cafeteria… the works! SFIS’ offer has been accepted and now a down payment is to be made to secure this home for SFIS.
Seeing SFIS be closer to the dream while being so far away has been difficult for me on a personal level. What can I do to support the cause aside from catching a glimpse via social media of the amazing work the volunteers have been doing towards this campaign? The best thing I can do to contribute is to reach out to you as I’ve done in the past. Your contribution of any size is not only tax-deductible but counts towards your zakat. Your contributions of both funds and time to help support this campaign and SFIS as an organization makes all the difference in one person’s educational experience!
I urge you to not only donate, but to visit SFIS, talk to the volunteers and see for yourself the work that’s being done. Visit SFIS’ Indiegogo’s page today to learn more, view pictures, stay informed of the latest announcements of the campaign and of course, to donate. =)
I promise you, your contribution of any form to SFIS will make at least one young girl smile from ear to ear.