Ibrahim’s Review of 2017

Annual review number nine! Can’t say I’m a novice at this anymore. I can already imagine next year’s review. We’ll be throwing a party. Cakes and balloons. Lots and lots of balloons. And cakes. I like cakes. Especially fresh cream. With a jam filling…

But then the balloons burst, and I wake up. The calendar still shows it’s 2017. It’s not quite over yet, but it’s time to look back on some of my personal highlights of the year.

In January, I was at the British Muslim Awards 2017, shortlisted as a finalist under the Services to Creativity and Technology category. The awards ceremony was at the Athena in Leicester. The winner was tech reviewer Safwan Ahmedmia, widely known as SuperSaf. Congratulations to you Safwan! I am also pleased to announce that I have been nominated as one of the finalists in the “One To Watch” category for the British Muslim Awards 2018, which will take place in Bradford. I am humbled to have been shortlisted again and wish all nominees the best of luck.

Ibrahim was a finalist in the Services to Creativity and Technology category at the British Muslim Awards 2017

Between February and April, I was one of the presenters of “@7”, a topical magazine show on Cambridge TV. It was really fun presenting alongside co-hosts Billy Pointon, Victoria Innes and Bridget Bradshaw, as we looked at all kinds of local stories to do with arts and culture, entertainment, current affairs, and much more. It was also a pleasure to collaborate with Rick Pinder, the producer and director of the series. Many thanks to the Cambridge TV School for the opportunity and also to Billy, Victoria, Bridget and Rick for being so awesome to work with!

The “@7” gang: Ibrahim with co-hosts Billy Pointon (top-left), Victoria Innes (top-right) and Bridget Bradshaw (bottom-left), and series producer/director Rick Pinder (bottom-right)

Along came May when I appeared on “Unsung Hero”, a talk show on IQRA Bangla (Sky 825) presented by Ishaque Uddin. I talked about my work as a blogger and presenter, as well as discussing various issues affecting the youth and the British Bangladeshi community. You can watch the full interview right here:

Between May and June, it was certainly a very exciting period for British politics. We had a snap general election that coincided with the month of Ramadan. I invited each parliamentary candidate, standing to be MP for Cambridge, to my home for a live interview/chat on Facebook. I really enjoyed the experience of interviewing the candidates, listening to them all discuss various key issues in the run-up to Election Day. It was a Labour hold for Cambridge, winning with more than 12,000 votes. Many thanks to Daniel Zeichner, Julian Huppert, Stuart Tuckwood and John Hayward for joining me on Facebook Live during the election period.

Ibrahim interviews the 2017 parliamentary candidates for Cambridge on Facebook Live: Stuart Tuckwood (top-left, Green), Dr John Hayward (top-right, Conservatives), Dr Julian Huppert (bottom-left, Liberal Democrat), Daniel Zeichner (bottom-right, Labour)

My biggest highlight of the year was in July when a childhood dream of mine became a reality. I was offered a work experience placement with ITV News to assist the newsteam with their coverage of the 2017 Wimbledon Championships. The two weeks I spent at SW19 were amazing, and I am so grateful I was given the opportunity to be part of one of the world’s greatest sporting events. Huge thanks to the ITV News team for everything, it really was an incredible experience.

Ibrahim at the 2017 Wimbledon Championships

Fast-forward to October. My mother and I co-launched Cambridge Rise, a digital media network providing positive news coverage online for the Cambridge community and beyond through multiple social media platforms. Since the launch, we have produced video reports on the completion of a community mural and the Cambridge Mosque Open Day. There’s still more to come as we keep on producing news reports as well as making mini-documentaries, sharing untold stories from the city’s wider communities. The website currently features various articles and blogs, and we’re hoping to publish more content in 2018 from new contributors. Exciting times ahead!

2016 was a tough year for me, but there have definitely been some great moments this time round. The hard work always continues of course. Business as usual. How many times in our lives have we thought about doing things but felt we could never pull it off? Of course, it’s important to be realistic and not set ourselves a target that is unattainable. Why not break it down? Make it easy. There is another way. Even when you’re faced with restrictions and limits, you can still do it.

I recently came across a motivational quote from Mufti Ismail Menk:

“Many of us are guilty of overthinking. Remember, the battle starts in your mind. Don’t defeat yourself in your own mind before you’ve even started. Focus your mind in the right direction. Be positive about things. You will see the difference.”

To all those who have supported me through the good and bad times, I thank you. Let’s continue to have hope. Keep on spreading the positivity into the new year and beyond. I’m looking forward to seeing what 2018 brings.

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Ibrahim’s Review of 2012: Part Two

“This review is far from over, and there is only one person who can finish the job. Step forth, Mr Rahman…”

How about that? Sounds like this blog post introduction has gone all soft on me now. Took you long enough…

“Hold on, I could so easily go back to being patronising again.”

Maybe you should. Some people may find it entertaining.

“Not this time, you deserve a break. Besides, you have a job to do. Continue…”

Right…

Welcome back. In the first part of my review, I analysed 2012 from an academic perspective. This time, I would like to you relax, sit back and enjoy the ride.

In terms of blogging for this year, I was certainly more active than in 2011. Unfortunately, I did not hit the high standards set in 2010, but it is a steady improvement.

It has been an interesting and productive year for filmmaking. I had to wait until I had completed my studies, but I was very excited about getting on with some new projects over the summer.

My mother, Shahida Rahman, witnessed the publication of her first novel “Lascar” in June. I created a short promotional trailer to promote the book, which has so far racked up approximately 700 views on YouTube. Two days after publication, “Lascar” was revealed to a sell-out audience at the Waterstone’s bookstore in Cambridge, where my mother delivered a short presentation on the history of Lascars and an insight of the book. After the presentation, she held a book signing. I produced two videos of the book launch, and all footage can be found on www.youtube.com/ShahidaOfficial and www.youtube.com/ihrahman. 2012 has been a massive year for my mother, and I pray that she continues to achieve success. Keep up the good work!

In July, the Olympic Torch arrived in Cambridge. I had an excellent view of watching the cauldron being lit by Iwan Thomas, and I was also able to create a short video of this momentous occasion. I tweeted the video to him, and he responded by sharing it on his profile! I think he has nearly 60,000 followers on Twitter. It was clear to see that sport had engulfed the nation this summer, making this a year that could never be forgotten. London 2012 was incredible. I had tickets to watch Football at Wembley Stadium, Archery at Lord’s Cricket Ground, and Handball and Wheelchair Tennis at the Olympic Park. Great stuff.

My final video of 2012 was “Ramadan Roundup 2“, the latest episode of the “Ramadan Roundup” series. Once again, I shared my own experiences of Ramadan from this year and I talked about various topics including family, education and charity. You can follow the latest updates on “Ramadan Roundup” via Facebook and Twitter.

I think I have just about covered everything on filmmaking for this year. However, I am still not finished yet. Do not worry though, Part Three will be on the way very soon! I better get some sleep. My friend is getting married in the morning!

We are reaching an epic conclusion, but you will have to be patient…