I became aware of Himaya Haven (HH) a few years ago and have been really struck by the impact such an organisation can make. Our key function as an organisation is to address the Mental Health and well-being issues and concerns, and we see the impact through various different lenses within the community; gangs, crime and imprisonment are just a few.
Himaya Haven have supported A Father’s Child Services CIC by providing support around language when we have wanted to meet the needs of service users where there has been a language barrier in the past. But I do not think that society or funders in general rarely consider the positive impact an organisation such as Himaya Haven can have in alleviating the stress and impact of loss, change and imprisonment. Just, by acknowledging a person as a victim, someone who is impacted by a loved one being imprisoned.
HH recognise that if a loved one is incarcerated there will be many victims, not just those that have had a crime perpetrated against them but, the shame that culture and communities can manifest for families and loved ones on the outside. The impact of mental health from maybe having a loved one imprisoned might also mean that your family’s income has now gone, the children will need to make an adjustment to losing a parent or sibling and the implications on their Mental Health alongside the ripple effects it all has on families and communities.
Funding organisations such as HH that think outside of the box, is vital to serving the whole community, and making the invisible community members visible whilst giving them a voice. The work that they do is very varied but unique and fits a niche in our community that has to be addressed; so that we can respond to the needs of the community as a whole.
CEO & Director
A Fathers Child Services CIC
Adult Services CIC
I have known Razia Hadait for over 10 years. She is a very strong, passionate, hardworking and amazing lady. Throughout the years she has supported many organisations with much needed causes, whilst receiving multiple awards and honours for her commitment towards her community and her dedication in supporting families. Most recently she has continued her great work through her organisation Himaya Haven where she promotes a strong voice working with the authorities for the silent victims on the outside. I have seen first-hand her work and watched her grow over the years guiding families with issues and listening to the families affected by imprisonment and by providing them the confidential support and advice, hence improving their outcomes for the families and their children. Razia’s organisation has helped to raise awareness of the needs of the families and improved the knowledge as to what kind of support is available to them.
Razia has organised many workshops and seminars and through mentoring and coaching, Himaya Haven encourage open channels of communication for many families giving them a voice and promoting social inclusion and secured positive outcomes for families within the community.
Founder & Chair for
British Kashmiri Women Council
It is encouraging to see a much-needed investment in the work of Himaya Haven which seeks to tackle an area of overlooked acute need. The disparities facing families of BAME prisoners is something that we have become increasingly aware through own work both inside and outside prisons. Therefore, it is good to see an organisation such as Himaya Haven be given the resources to develop culturally competent and community-based solutions.
Himaya Haven have been in the criminal justice field for a number of years now, attempting to strengthen the knowledge base around families of prisoners and develop practice within this area. All too often, such specialist organisations are up against incredible challenges and barriers which makes their longevity difficult. We know this only too well from our own experiences. The fact that Himaya Haven have shown staying power and their efforts have been rewarded by a relatively long-term investment, is commendable. I look forward to the learning and practice that will come from this.
Co-Founder & National
Coordinator Muslim Women in
Himaya Haven provide families who are impacted by imprisonment with crucial support at a time when they may be at their most vulnerable. These families can face a wide range of difficulties and challenges, including financial difficulties, social stigma, emotional hardships and practical problems. Despite these circumstances there is generally very little recognition and support available for prisoners’ families who are often identified as secondary victims of crime. Himaya Haven provide families with information and support to alleviate the challenges they face and remove some of their isolation. Furthermore, Himaya Haven’s local connection and expertise enables them to offer culturally specific support to families from minority communities who are disproportionately impacted by imprisonment.
Researcher, University of Leeds
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