Meet Dhaha Nur, PANA Youth Leader
My name is Dhaha Nur (pronounced taa-haa noor). My first name has an unknown meaning -the meaning is only known to God; my last name means light. I find culture, art, literature, poetry, highly engaging and stimulating. I love to smile, laugh, devour chocolate, write and perform poetry, and engage others through the world of art. I am also very data and tech-centric. I am currently pursuing a degree at SDSU in Management Information Systems. I work for Apple Inc and aim to specialize in information security or cybersecurity. I am also the Treasurer for the Muslim Student Association at SDSU, a Fellow at the Bread and Roses Feminist Research and Activism, and a Youth Leader at PANA. I aim to inspire people through my poetry, to make others feel understood, and be a champion for human rights. With my free time I like to organize youth events, play soccer, and spend time with family and friends. Here is some of the work I have done at PANA:
I represented PANA at the Youth Organizing Summit held in Washington D.C. by the Alliance for Youth Action, which focused on empowering youth to mobilize, build a movement, and make relationships with other youth leaders across the country. I attended workshops on electoral organizing, leadership development, social infrastructure, and establishing durable and responsive programs.
With the help of PANA I also represented refugees through poetry in Specific Gravity in Washington D.C. and San Diego. Specific Gravity is a multidisciplinary performance art project that explores the experiences of forcibly displaced persons through art. Our goal is to raise awareness for refugees and foster a deeper understanding and empathy towards new members of our community. Specific Gravity was part of the San Diego International Fringe Festival, and proceeds from the performances were donated to PANA.
I am currently working with PANA in conjunction with the Bread and Roses Center for Feminist Research and Activism in a collaborative community research project to better understand and serve refugee needs in the San Diego County. I am a Fellow of the Bread and Roses Feminist Activist Research Symposium which has partnered with PANA to highlight and elevate the positive economic and social contributions of refugees in San Diego.
With the support of PANA, we have created a collaborative poetry and art forum to focus and highlight issues that youth personally face. This platform has given a voice for disenfranchised youth to express themselves through creative means, and to showcase their talents to other communities. Some of the events our team has created include E Pluribus Unum, What’s Your Story, and Ramadan Revealed. Our team consists of engaged high-school and college students with an interest in vocalizing issues that impact them and their peers.
I also represented PANA at the San Diego Italian Film Festival as a panelist at the screen of “Shores of Light: Salento 1945-1947.” In this I urged the audience to research the current refugee crisis and get involved, whether it’s volunteering with one of the agencies working on refugee resettlement or influencing policy at the local, state, or national level. The film allowed us to draw parallels and similarities between the current refugee crisis and the refugee crisis following WWII.
I have also worked with PANA successfully launching voter engagement programs, such as the Get out the Vote for 2016 California primary election, and the November Civic Engagement Campaign.
Follow Dhaha on Twitter @dhahanur