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The Rahma Registry

Mission Statement

Our mission at Rahma Counselling & Consulting is to provide culturally literate services rooted in a commitment to trauma-informed, intersectional, and anti-oppressive practices. Our approach includes a recognition of the land upon which care is being delivered and a particular sensitivity to the dignity and care for BIPOC and 2S-LGBTQIA+ individuals whose identities may intersect in a multitude of ways across spectrums of race, age, gender, sexuality, language, ability, religion and/or culture. 

 

As Muslim practitioners with lived experiences of faith as well as education and training in the areas of pastoral care and spiriutally-integrative psychotherapy, we recognize the unique role that we play in serving the Muslim community by providing therapeutic services that are enhanced by the appropriate understanding of the ways in which religious/spiritually salient issues may be a contributing factor to a Muslim’s sense of well-being (or lack thereof). We understand the nuance and delicacy of working with Muslim demographics, many of whom intentionally seek out a therapist with a shared intersections. At the same time, we recognize and acknowledge that empirically, although proper therapist matching can be highly beneficial for clients, a shared identity between therapist and client is not enough. As such, by leveraging our respective professional expertise and knowledge when working with these populations, we are able to fill a niche that, in the current psychotherapy landscape, is sorely lacking. Indeed, we have found that much of our client base has reported experiencing frequent therapeutic ruptures due to previous negative practitioner bias, early-termination and the frustrations that stem therefrom as a result of, as they often note, ‘not being able to find a therapist who gets them.’

 

The purpose of this directory therefore is to provide an accessible and well-informed resource for Muslims, regardless of their intersections, seeking mental health services whereby they can show up as their full selves, with less time and emotional labour being spent educating (or worse yet, justifying to) their therapist on the role of the intersections of their identities on their mental health including, but not limited to: various culturally and religiously based customs/norms, approaches to mental health and wellbeing, and taboos, as well as the impacts of migration, intergenerational trauma, familial/social roles and expectations, ad even idioms and language. Having a directory of Muslim mental health practitioners adept at navigating these complexities will make the task of those seeking such therapists far easier than it currently is, especially when considering the general lack of representation of Muslim practitioners in the field of mental health.

This directory was made possible through a grant generously provided to us by Black Women United.

Core Values

Practitioners listed the directory may come from any one of the many communities of interpretation in Islam and may practice their faith in a variety of ways. Practitioners may also be non-Muslim, provided they, like their Muslim counterparts, have made an explicit commitment to upholding best practices when working with Muslim and/or other diverse client demographics. 

 

In order to be added to this directory, practitioners must be a current member of a valid regulating body within their jurisdiction with good standing and up-to-date liability insurance. Each practitioner has also been vetted by Salima and/or Ubah and have agreed to adhere to the following guiding values:

 

  • We recognize that Islam is a diverse and multifaceted tradition and commit to embracing a pluralist approach to understanding it when working with clients. We commit to learning about this diversity and to allowing our clients to tell us what their faith means to them without making assumptions or passing judgment on ‘correct’ theology or practice.

  • We deeply believe in an embodied therapeutic practice which navigates the spiritual, cultural, and/or religiously salient presenting issues in ways that is rooted in lived experience, and draws from history, cultural context, theology, and evidence-based psychotherapeutic approaches when possible. We also recognize that our role as therapists is markedly different from that of a religious/spiritual authority and commit to making the appropriate referral(s) when needed.

  • We understand and honor the way that Muslim individuals, families, and communites are often deeply intertwined, and commit to navigating any issues that arise from that reality (e.g. dual relationships) in a culturally-literate and ethically sound manner.

  • We commit to non-discriminatory practices for all demographics of clients, particularly people of colour, with specific attention paid to those who are Black, Indigenous, or members of the 2S-LGBTQIA+ community, as we recognize that those intersections can be particularly challenging in Muslim contexts.

  • We have an ongoing practice of critical engagement with the self and seek to identify and mitigate any potentially harmful biases we may be bring into our practice, such as Islamophobia, anti-black racism, abelism, misogyny, etc. We recognize that this is an ongoing process and that we will inevitably make mistakes, so we commit to being open to being called in, learning, and repairing the harm whenever possible.

  • We are actively working to understand and implement Treaty in ways that reflect a deep commitment to uphold the trust we have been given as treaty peoples. Where we work on unceded land, we acknowledge this difficult truth and work towards a relationship of trust and respect with our Indigenous siblings. And in either case, we recognize the value of decolonial practice and strive together with Indigenous peoples to decolonize this land, as well as the lands from which we may originate.

  • We recognize the colonial underpinnings in the field of psychotherapy as it stands and make continual efforts to mitigate the potential harmful impacts upon clients due to mainstream therapy practices which may uphold/enhance colonial structures. This includes: 

    • A commitment to the deconstruction of harmful power imbalances in the therapeutic relationship, and the calling-in and amending of such dynamics as they show up in our practice.

    • A clear understanding of the ways in which various assessment tools as well as the current Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Health Disorders (DSM) are largely based on cis, het, white male populations and therefore may not apply in the same ways to individuals of other varied intersections and may impact their ability to access proper assessment, diagnosis, and treatment.

    • A good sense in the ways in which factors such as legal status, language barriers, fear of bias/misdiagnosis, culturally-rooted taboos/misinformation, and structural bias and discrimination may prevent certain client demographics from accessing mental health services and a commitment to supporting clients in navigating potential barriers as needed. 

    • Engaging with various related systems (e.g. medical professionals/hospitals, immigration and legal systems, police/RCMP, schools, children services etc.) delicately and with a harm-reduction lens as it pertains to the duty to report and/or when the client has consented to a release of information to the therapist.

    • A rigor in ensuring ongoing informed consent, particularly for clients who may have fears when navigating mental health services.

 

The Rahma Registry

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Salima (she/her) is a psychotherapist and a Canadian Certified Counsellor with a master’s degree in Counselling Psychology. She specializes in culturally and spiritually supportive mental health, especially with women & queer folx of colour, particularly Muslims.

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Ubah Mohamoud (she/her) is a Canadian Certified Counsellor with a Master's degree in Spiritually Integrative Psychotherapy from St. Stephen's College, AB. She works with predominantly Muslim demographics from culturally humble, trauma-informed, anti-oppresive and intersectional approaches.

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