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Naghmana Sherazi values The Fig Tree's inclusive approach

Naghmana Sherazi is an immigrant working with The Lands Council.


Naghmana Sherazi, who immigrated to the United States from Pakistan, works at the Lands Council and is active in Spokane, values the non-judgmental, inclusive approach of The Fig Tree.

 "It creates understanding of the larger community and the little people that are not in the mainstream.

"The Fig Tree goes in depth and connects with people on a different level," Naghmana said. "For me, it fosters understanding about what my community looks like outside of my faith and circle of friends."

Naghmana moved to Spokane about 12 years ago after three years in Houston, Texas, to work as a cytogenetic technologist for a genetic testing company. It folded a year after she came.

"I didn't know anybody here," she said. "There were few from Pakistan, but I found many people who are like-minded. I've been blessed to be in community with different people from all walks of life and kinds of communities."

Her passion lies with immigrants and refugees, people from her Muslim community and people involved in environmental care.

Naghmana tells of learning about The Fig Tree.

"Mary was everywhere taking pictures at events. I wondered who she was. Then I realized she was part of The Fig Tree and the wonderful stories they write. It's a place where I have found so much connection. The Fig Tree is an icon in the community. They've been around a long time. Mary knows everybody. She's compassionate about immigrants, refugees and diversity. That matters to me because I am part of that community."

"Mary did an article about how my work for the environment and climate justice with The Lands Council connects with my Muslim faith. That's important to me.

"What attracts me to The Fig Tree is that I can pick it up and find something new that I didn't know about going on in the community.

"I like that I can open The Fig Tree and read about Sravasti Abbey, the Jewish community and faith festivals.

Naghmana also values the Resource Directory, which compiles resources in one place. "I have my questions answered by opening up a book, and everything is listed. It's amazing to flip through the pages and see the listings by categories—faith, food, environment.

"Being an immigrant coming from another part of the world. I didn't know anyone in Spokane when I arrived. To be able to just pick up the directory, I skimmed through and saw the different categories—where to find food banks or donate my clothes. I can offer these resources to other people.

"I love that The Fig Tree writes about anything and everything important to the community. It includes diversity. There is no single focus or subject. It's about anything and everybody. That's The Fig Tree's strength. Staff are connected to many different parts of the community. It brings everything together, so I use it as a resource for not just news on what's happening in the community but also what events are coming up," Naghmana said.

Copyright@ The Fig Tree, May 2024