Speaker Profiles

Shaykh Haisam Farache 

Born and raised on Sydney’s North Shore, Sheikh Haisam attended Marist College North Sydney and commenced his undergraduate university studies at the University of Montana, USA. He attained a Bachelor of Laws from the University of Western Sydney, a Diploma in Shariah (Hons) Dar al Mustafa, Yemen and a Master of Applied Family Law from the College of Law, Sydney.

Sheikh Haisam holds numerous Ijazas (Licenses) in Islamic Law from scholars in Yemen, Syria, Tunisia, Lebanon and Saudi Arabia. Previously he has held posts as an Imam at Imam Ali Mosque (Lakemba Mosque) and Artarmon Mosque. Currently, Sheikh Haisam is the principal solicitor at Garrison Lawyers predominantly practicing in family law. He also teaches at Charles Sturt University, Arts Faculty in Islamic Studies, a Minister of Religion (Islam) and is an accredited Family Dispute Resolution Practitioner.

Dr Salih Yucel 

DrSalih Yucel completed  Master of Theology in University of Sydney. He continued his postgraduate studies in United States and his doctorate at Boston University in 2007. His doctoral research was on "The Effect of Prayer on Muslim Patients Well-being"

Dr Salih has worked as a Muslim Chaplain at Harvard Medical School's hospitals for seven years. After ten years in the United States, he returned to Australia in 2007.  A/Prof. Yucel worked as lecturer and senior lecturer at Centre for Religious Studies at Monash University between  2008-2014. Currently he teaches at the Centre for Islamic Studies and Civilisation at Charles Sturt University in Sydney. He is also Provisional CPE Supervisor.

Davud Ilham

Davud is currently senior head teacher in the Faculty of education, teaching with Amity College, Prestons Boys High School Campus. He holds a Master's degree in Islamic Studies from Charles Sturt University. With over 15 years of teaching experience in NSW High School HSC subjects and as a counselor, Davud Ilham continues to inspire and mentor the future leaders through faith, education and service. Being a strong believer in the current generations’ ability to build, contribute and shape a great future of human civilization. Davud has been actively involved in various Muslim community activities such as interfaith dialogue, conferences, discussions in a span close to 20 years .

Davud, on the other side, is a father of 5. He has a special interest in the family and parenting issues and is extensively well-read in this field. Using this expertise, he has assisted many families to overcome their family and parenting difficulties.

Ayesha Ahmed

Ayesha Ahmad has lived in Sydney, Australia for over 45 years. Instilled with strong values of family and community, she completed her studies, established a career, married, had children and has recently become a grandmother. 

With this established skill set and life experiences, she is fulfilling her aspiration to serve the Muslim community by volunteering with the Islamophobia Register Australia and Islamic Special Religious Education. Currently completing the Clinical Pastoral Education in Islamic Chaplaincy accreditation with ISRA and Islamic studies at Daar Aisha College, Ayesha is well on her way to achieving her love for lifelong learning and bring about a positive contribution to the reputation of Islam.

Deniz Dagli

Deniz Dagli is a registered psychologist, currently completing her Master of Clinical Psychology. She has been providing psychological services and support to children, adolescents, adults and families for 10 years. She has helped many individuals, couples and families that come with a range of issues such as relationship conflict, stress, depression, anxiety, workplace challenges, complex trauma, psychosis, grief and loss, PTSD and bipolar disorder.She is passionate about serving the Muslim community and has been actively involved in various community activities such as interfaith dialogue, psycho education and leadership programs to adolescent in schools and workshops. Deniz believes in the resilience of the human soul and our innate drive towards healing and content.  She sees that life’s challenges, even in distress, are chances to change, grow and move forward. Deniz is a mother of two young boys. She has a special interest in family based therapy and supporting couples in their relationship and parenting difficulties.

Calisha Bennett

Calisha Bennett has over twelve years of experience as an active community leader, speaker, teacher and mentor of Muslim women and youth. She is backed by academic, religious and personal studies in the areas of youth work, education, leadership, Islamic Shariah, Quran, Tajweed and specialises in Islamic identity coaching and personal development.

Calisha has taught and spoken for countless audiences in Muslim and non-Muslim communities. She is passionate about the future of Muslim communities and helping to strengthen the faith and Islamic identities of Muslim women and youth worldwide. 

Rasheeka Matthews 

Rasheeka Matthews is a mother of 5 children, as well as being an Islamic Studies, Quran & Arabic teacher. She has undergone Shariah & Quran studies and has recently authored the book "How to save your marriage in 30 days with Quran & Sunnah".

Rasheeka is passionate about imparting Islamic education to  children & has been a madrasah teacher for 13 years. She has launched Children's Arabic alphabet flash cards for non Arabic speakers. At age 13 her family was involved in a major car accident around that time, which left her in a coma for 6 days. This was a turning point, as Rasheeka's hopes of pursuing her sports ambitions were cut short when she suffered major injuries. All of these experiences have strengthened and shaped who she is today.

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