Karishma Dharni

Announcing our new Executive Director

‘I look forward to joining SBS to amplify Black women’s voices.’

Southall Black Sisters is entering a new phase under the leadership of Selma Taha. We will continue to remain a vital and vociferous campaigning voice for Black and minoritised women, to grow and develop the excellence of our services for women and girls facing violence and to build on the reputation that we have acquired over the last 43 years. We warmly welcome Selma to the SBS family.

Selma Taha has been proud to work, for over a decade, in a sector dedicated to reducing and eliminating all forms of violence against women and girls. Specifically, she has been a manager of advocacy and support services at the nia Project, Advance Charity, and Victim Support. She considers herself to be a collegial staff member and a fair and approachable manager. She is an innovative and proactive leader who has significantly enhanced the quality of services at leading London charities.

Selma is an Arabic speaker of Sudanese heritage who moved to the UK as a child in the mid-1970s. She has personal experience of carving out a life as a Black woman in west London. She has had to work through a number of tensions around sex and race inequality and religious fundamentalism that lie at the heart of Southall Black Sisters’ concerns.

Her beliefs, ethos and values are based on gender equality, human rights and non-discrimination, and throughout her years of working with women and girls, she has made it a priority to keep them at the centre of services by committing to raise awareness about the impact of abuse and violence experienced by women and girls due to their sex, social and economic status, race, cultural, linguistic, religious and sexual orientation.

Within the nia Project, Selma co-founded an anti-racism working group at the height of reflections on the relevance of Black Lives Matter to the VAWG sector. She has completed an undergraduate degree in Social Anthropology and Development Studies at the School of Oriental and African Studies, and recently gained a Distinction in the MA Woman and Child Abuse programme at London Metropolitan University.

Selma says ‘As a Black woman, I have always had great respect and admiration for the work and activism of SBS and what they have achieved for African, Caribbean and Asian women in the UK. I look forward to joining SBS to amplify Black women’s voices. I know this is needed now more than ever.’



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