Agency Referrals

Staff Team

Nahid Picture

Nahid Rasool


Nahid Rasool is the Chief Executive of Shantona Women and Family Centre.  She has worked in the charity sector for than 35 years; 23 years for Shantona. Prior to this she worked in London and Bradford in various roles. She faced lots of challenges, prejudice, inequality and barriers within the South Asian community and these made her determined to do something for the culturally diverse women and girls who live in this country, facing inequality and discriminated within their homes and workplaces. 

In 1998 she joined Shantona and with only 1.5 full time staff, including herself, the organisation started offering help and support to the women of the Bangladeshi community in Leeds. Today Shantona has more than 30 staff and the team works tirelessly to help create a community of strong, confident, and empowered women, challenging negative behaviour and practices.  

Her determination and passion for her work has steered the organisation towards success in delivering projects locally, nationally, and internationally.  It has not gone unnoticed, with various awards for the organisation, most notably Shantona was awarded the ‘Duke of York Community Initiatives Award’ in 2007 and again in 2012. It has also been awarded the A1 Business Excellence Award “Best Women’s Centre” in 2015 and in 2007, Shantona was the winner of GSK Impact Awards 2020. 

Nahid has also been involved in the hate crime strategy for Leeds and published a book, “Islamophobia, The Untold Story”.  She has also worked nationally and internationally.  Nahid was the UK coordinator of “Gender Wise”, a transnational European project looking at gender equality issues before the policy came into practice.  Representatives from various countries in EU such as Brussels, Italy, Spain, and Denmark were involved.  

Nahid has a BA (Honours) in History from the University of Dhaka and a Masters in Business Administration from Leeds Beckett. In 2017 she received an Honorary Doctorate from Leeds Beckett for her contribution to voluntary and public sector. 

Her connection with Bangladesh continues and in 2016 the “Sufia Khatun Health Clinic” was opened in Baluarchor in Bangladesh to provide free health care for the villagers. The clinic was named in memory of Nahid’s grandmother. 

Adults and Community Team

Our adults and community team is made up of a domestic violence support worker, Better Together programme project worker that supports and promotes healthy lifestyles, a complex needs worker who is dedicated to helping those with more difficult issues, a Training and Employment support worker who supports women in the local community to access training employment opportunities' CV writing and advice on how to register and set up their own small business ventures. Together they work to promote a happier and safer community for all. To find out more contact or call 0113 249 7120

Young People and Children Team

Domestic Violence Project Worker - Children and Young People

The main role of the project worker is to support children and young people from South Asian communities, who are facing domestic violence or at risk of violence. Working as the project specialist, they support the development of initiatives to build resilience amongst young people around DV, provide high quality front-line services and encourage maximum service user participation in the service and its development. The project worker reaches out to children and young people and can signpost them to appropriate services, including counselling support provision if necessary.

Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE) Project Worker - Children and Young People

The CSE worker supports young people from South Asian communities aged 12-18 years at risk of CSE. Working as the project specialist they develop initiatives to build resilience amongst young people around child exploitation and providing high quality front-line services in order to support and prevent the issues around sexual exploitation within the known and unknown environments. It helps develop and increase understanding amongst young people about the risk of becoming victims. It targets mainly BME young people and families, who are either victims or at risk of becoming victims of sexual exploitation for various reasons.

Youth Worker - Children and Young People

We work with and support BME girls and young women primarily from South Asian communities aged 10-18 years to facilitate their personal, social and educational development. As part of this, we support young people during their period of transition from dependence to interdependence by enabling them to gain a voice, influence and place in society. The Youth worker also supports 16-17 years old young women who are not in education, employment or training (NEET), motivating them, providing them with one to one personalised support and help them gain work experience through volunteering and work placements.

Early Years Team

The eary years team is made up of 7 permanant staff and several other volunteers and session workers. The team is managed by Tam Le and Sabuj Shalam. Together the team manages the Shantona nursery which invloves coordinating a full time early years sevice that caters for children from the age of 2 + years. To find out more contact or call 0113 249 7120

Sabuj Shalam and Tam Le

Early Years Managers

The purpose of their roles is to manage and develop of all early years staff and ensuring and facilitating the participation of service users. Tam and Sabuj are responsible for recruiting and maintaining sufficient numbers of children for outreach and partnership work, managing day to day activities, setting up sessions in-line with early years foundation stage curriculum and are responsible for planning and running an exciting range of play activities for children at the centre.

Diane Law

Development Coordinator

Diane works as our Development coordinator, focusing on fundraising and quality assurance for Shantona.

Administration and Operations Team

Our admin and operations team is made up of management support workers and our CEO. This team handles all of our admin, finance, funding, business operations and the day to day taks we undertake at Shantona.

If you have any general enquiries please contact or call 0113 249 7120 and one of our admin team will be happy to help.