Had Sajda sat on the first train carriage on the Piccadilly tube 12 years ago on 7/7, she wouldn’t be alive today. 7/7 is a day that she remembers just like yesterday.
This year has been particularly difficult for her given the four terror attacks that the UK has experienced in quick succession. Every time she witnesses such a tragedy on the news, she is reminded of what happened to her on 7/7, where she remembers the sounds, the smells and the images of tragedy.
Hearing mothers’ accounts is particularly hard for her as she is reminded of the panic and anguish her own mother felt after the attacks, when she had no idea whether she was alive or dead.
It was 7/7/ that changed Sajda’s life to quit her City job and devote her life to preventing extremism within her community, the Muslim community.
One positive is that the issue of online radicalisation is now publicly recognised in a way that it wasn’t after the 7/7 bombings. This is partly due to the hard work Sajda has done at JAN Trust to highlight the dangers of online radicalisation, and tackle it from a grassroots approach.
She developed and delivers the award-winning Web Guardians™ programme which is the first of its kind educating and empowering Muslim women and mothers to prevent and tackle online extremism, building community resilience.
The programme has reached the homes of the most vulnerable in the UK where mothers have been empowered to be effective Web Guardians™ of their children protecting them from being radicalised online.
“I didn’t become a fatal victim of extremism as 56 others did, and countless more have since. If someone had been watching out for the signs of Germaine Lindsay’s radicalisation, we might have been able to prevent what happened on 7/7. We might have been able to save the lives of those who died.”
What is important is the need for my work and the Web Guardians programme to continue in order to prevent online radicalisation and save lives. Sustained funding would enable us to reach as many mothers, children and communities as possible. Without it, we run the risk of more individuals, particularly young people, being brain washed online, and then I dread to think what could happen. I do not want another 7/7 and I need your support so enough really can be enough.”