Farheen Khan was the victim of an Islamophobic attack
by a stranger in a residential apartment building in Toronto. She managed to
elude her attacker but the assault on her body had only just begun. For fear of
dishonoring her family in the South Asian and Muslim community, Farheen didn’t
report the incident. Internalizing this experience so deeply sent her body into
an allergic overdrive, resulting in fatal anaphylactic shock. Being unable to
consume entire food groups gave her an insight into how a third of the people
on earth are unable to eat for a very different
reason—poverty and food insecurity. Despite her allergies, Farheen worked
tirelessly to make a difference
locally on building the foundation for the Muslim social services sector in her
city. From the ?rst lick of soy pudding, to despair and back again, she
realized that not only can we not ?ght adversity alone—we are not expected to.
This is an honest and candid story about accepting the angels that come in and
out of our lives when we need them the most, to show us to ourselves as a
re?ective surface on a dirty wall. Sometimes being swept away by a giant wave
beyond our understanding can take us to beaches we never knew existed; and in
losing control, we can often gain control of who we are and what we are really
about. Today, cured of 95 percent of her allergies, Farheen has founded and
presides over several non-pro?t organizations to help relieve poverty.
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