Maisaloon Al-Ashkar

Maisaloon is a Muslim Palestinian who grew-up in Jordan, and now she is an immigrant-settler who is grateful to live on Coast Salish Territories. 

Throughout high school, she was actively involved in the Leadership, Mentorship, and Library programs. She was also Editor-In-Chief of the student newspaper, Chair of Grad Council, and Chapter President of the Best Buddies club. She first recognized her potential as a young activist during a Social Justice course in grade 12, where she organized a student-led Human Library project that provided youth with an open and safe space to eradicate stereotypes through one-on-one conversations about the lived experiences of diverse individuals dealing with different forms of oppression. She graduated from secondary school in 2014, and is humbled to be the first student in her high school’s history to have won the Exemplary Citizen Award consecutively through grades 8 to 12. 

Maisaloon helps organize a conference for youth called Social Justice Beyond the Classroom. She partakes in Fossil Free Faith, an interfaith network through which she intertwines her activism with her faith background. She is on the leadership team of SFU’s Best Buddies Chapter, and involved with SFU Amnesty International, Simon Fraser Public Interest Research Group, and the SFU Women’s Centre. She works as a Program Leader for the City of Burnaby, where she’s inspired by the vibrant energy of children. She’s studying First Nations Studies and Political Science at Simon Fraser University on a Major Entrance Scholarship. She is an Advanced Placement Scholar and a recipient of the Burnaby Youth Citizenship award. 

Maisaloon’s Palestinian heritage allowed her to witness the repercussions of oppression at a very young age, which is the spark that ignites her compassionate fight for justice. Her faith is the grounding force that sustains her energized spirit and sense of hope. She is a young woman of colour determined to cultivate decolonized spaces in which the marginalized communities she identifies with are represented, empowered, and heard! 

Faith & the Common Good blog post: