Ayatollah Dr Sayyid Fadhel Hosseini Al-Milani – Religious Advisor and Course Facilitator
Ayatollah Fadhel Al-Milani was born in the Holy City of Karbala in 1944. He read Religious Studies at the Hawza of the Holy City of Najaf – from 1962 to 1970 under late Grand Ayatollah Sayyid Abul Qasim Al-Khoei and from 1968 to 1970, under the late Grand Ayatollah Sayyid Mohsin Al-Hakim.
For two years of his time in Najaf Ayatollah Fadhel Al-Milani taught Jurisprudence, Principles of Jurisprudence and Theology at the College of Fiqh and for eight years, at the Hawza of Najaf. In 1971 he migrated to Mashhad where he attended the advanced fatwa assemblies and completed his studies under the guidance of the late Grand Ayatollah Sayyid Muhammad Hadi Al-Milani. In 1974 he became acknowledged as a Mujtahid in the Holy City of Mashhad. His work on Ijtihad, Lectures on Imamiyah Jurisprudence, published in six volumes, is still currently used in the Hawzas of Mashhad and Qum. In addition to being Imam at Imam Khoei Islamic Centre, Ayatollah Al-Milani is Dean of International Colleges for Islamic Studies, London and Islamic studies Ph.D. candidate supervisor. A lot of his work also focuses on consultation and counselling with married couples.
Sheikh Mohammed Al-Hilli – Executive Director
Noor Islamic Education is headed by our Director: Islamic Scholar, Speaker and Author; Sheikh Mohammed Al-Hilli. He holds a Masters degree in Pharmacy from the University of London and an MA in Islamic Studies from Middlesex University in the UK. Having studied Hawza (Islamic Seminary education) in both London and Najaf since 2001, he also teaches Hawza studies at the Islamic College in London. He is the author of four published books; ‘Muharram Sermons’, ‘Arbaeen: The Walk’, ‘Baqi: Past, Present & Future’ as well as ‘Secrets to Happiness: An inspiring journey into Chapter 20 of the Holy Quran.’
At Noor Islamic Education, Sheikh Al-Hilli regularly conducts sought-after Qurʾānic commentary programmes, marriage and parenting courses, as well as practical workshops on social, historic, moral and jurisprudential areas of importance to Muslims in the West.
Abbas Merali – Course Facilitator
Abbas is a qualified accountant by profession and currently runs a small business in pharmaceuticals. He is married with 2 children aged 14 and 12 and is actively involved within the community as part of the Stanmore Jafferys Executive Team having served as the chairman for four years; a qualified FA Level 1 Football Coach with the Stanmore Jafferys Football Academy and a Madhressa Teacher, as a co-teacher with Shaheen, teaching in the Higher Education Department with the final year students.
He has also previously served as a mentor at a number of Summer Camps in Sweden and Iran lead by COEJ and The World Federation. In addition to having a Parents of Teens Coaching Certification and a Mediation Certification, Abbas has co-authored two books with his wife Shaheen; Marriage to Parenthood – The Heavenly Path and Selecting a Spouse – The Heavenly Path, and been involved in delivering workshops in the area of marriage and spouse selection for over 10 years in various parts of the world (United Kingdom, Kenya, Tanzania, India, Chicago, Vancouver, Orlando etc)
Abbas is heavily involved in running the Noor Islamic Education Spouse selection and Successful Marriage courses in particular. He brings a wealth of personal experience to every session as well as an abundance of wisdom and humour!
Shaheen Merali – Course Facilitator
Shaheen Merali calls herself an international citizen, and for good reason! Born in Dubai to East-African parents with Indian origin, she moved to the US in her teens and then to the UK in her twenties. She has a degree in Psychology and more recently, a diploma in Montessori teaching. Much of her life has been spent working with children, either in a professional capacity or volunteer work in the community.
Since the birth of her son in 2005 and her daughter in 2007, Shaheen found herself drawn to peaceful methods of parenting from early on, but it was a sudden onset of separation anxiety with her daughter that led her to Hand in Hand. The tools offered by Hand in Hand were instrumental in helping turn things around and keen to spread the word, she became a Certified Instructor in 2014.
Shaheen is involved in our Successful Spouse Selection course, Marriage course and Parenting course. With a huge amount of experience and expertise in these fields, she brings her calm and warming demeanour to all our courses and fills our participants with the confidence to know they can implement the relevant techniques.
Dr Sarfraz Jeraj – Course Facilitator
Dr Sarfraz Jeraj works professionally as a chartered clinical psychologist in adult mental health services in the NHS. He also works as a Senior Teaching Fellow in the Psychology Department at the University of Surrey. He is currently the lead for capacity building for the Council of European Jamaats and has been involved in leadership, mentoring and personal development training in the Muslim community and other communities for over 10 years.
Dr Sarfraz is a qualified MBTI (Myers Briggs Type Indicator) practitioner. Sarfraz is also a borough co-chair for Lmabeth Citizens, an organisation bringing together Muslim and non-Muslim civic society institutions to work together for the common good of Londoners, particularly around social justice and equality issues. His professional training qualifications and broad-based working experience bring him the relevant contexts and expertise for leadership development training.
Dr Sarfraz is also an ex-president of Hyderi Khoja Shi’s Jamaat in London.
Reshma Jaffrey – Director of Marketing and Events
Reshma Jaffrey leads the marketing for Noor Islamic Education. She has a Degree in International Relations with Politics from the University of Birmingham. Having lived in Birmingham, Edinburgh and her birthplace of North London she loves the UK and particularly enjoys meeting new people and promoting the beautiful teachings of Islam – especially at Noor Islamic Education events where people come from all over the UK. During her time at Noor Islamic Education she has also edited four Islamic books: ‘Muharram Sermons’, ‘Arbaeen: The Walk’, ‘Baqi: Past, Present & Future’ as well as ‘Secrets to Happiness: An inspiring journey into Chapter 20 of the Holy Quran.’
Reshma’s other passion is her work at Noor Orphans Fund, where changing the lives of orphans is the primary goal. She edits digital content for both charities, as well as fundraising, marketing, research and events coordination in addition to project management and strategic input.