“Home is where the heart is and the heart is where our
work is.”

We are a collective of professionals, teachers, volunteers, and peers who understand firsthand the challenge of living as Muslims in the west and we strive to provide the necessary means to facilitate that reality.

Diane Stair

Executive Director

“My experience of coming to Islam through Ta’leef & Zaytuna felt like a red carpet had been rolled out before me. I later learned this was not everyone’s experience!  That compelled me to shift careers and dedicate my work focused on ensuring that others could discover Islam the way I had.”

Suhaila Aziz

Operations Director

“A person is blessed to have one family, but to be able to say that I have two, is the greatest gift possible. I hope to share the gift of family at Ta’leef with everyone, and pray that its warmth can be felt for all of humanity.”.

Alaa Suliman

Programs Coordinator

“To paraphrase the narration of our beloved Messenger, if our hearts are sound then so are our bodies. For me, Ta’leef is an integral part of my heart-work journey.”

Mustafa Jibawi

Programs Coordinator, Chicago

“Ta’leef is my family; it is a home away from home. It is where I have found people embodying Prophetic love, through selfless service and compassion towards everyone. Ta’leef proves that love and service is everything, and that it is the foundation to all good.”

Micah Anderson

Wellness Director

“Taleef Collective is a semi-sacred space which aims to provide learning, healing, and connection for its attendees on all levels; from the physical, to the psycho-emotional, to the spiritual. All the while, it attempts to maintain rooted in the Islamic traditions of excellence and service. It is part of a larger movement whose time has come in the West.”

Stara Rahmani

Executive Assistant

“Knowing about Ta’leef is an invitation from Allah. Once you step foot into the space, you don’t ever want to leave. Ta’leef is home to many, built on a foundation of love.”

Ayesha Kazi

Wellness Clinician

“Ta’leef is a place where all are welcome and loved and valued. For me, it has been a place that fosters real, authentic, human connection, and where I can come to heal, grow, love and be loved.”

Ali Dia

Operations Manager, Chicago

“Ta’leef is not about buildings or spaces. Ta’leef is about the hearts that gather. Some hearts are greater than others. And when you encounter a heart that is connected to the greatest of hearts, the heart of the Prophet Muhammad, (peace and blessings be upon him) miracles take place!”

Maya Shweiky

Programs Manager

“Ta’leef is the new standard of Islam in America. Welcoming all with smiles and tea, we aim to honor the true spirit of our teachers, going back to the prophets. We’re all in this journey together. And Ta’leef supports and honors that journey, or process, for everyone involved—a true mark of community.”

W. El-Amin James

Re-entry Coordinator

“Ta’leef is a friendly place, where people really care about the well-being of others. I’m a person who wants nothing but good for people who have seen the very worse in life, and want people to understand that life is too short not to be good to one another.”

Mahdy Amine

Teacher & Convert Care

“I want people to feel the true beauty of Islam when they encounter Ta’leef. Was not our Prophet (upon him peace and blessings) the radiant embodiment of outer and inner beauty? One who saw him was in awe, and one who knew him fell in love. I hope Ta’leef translates that experiential beauty to a relevant American context, while honoring the ethos and principles of the rich Islamic tradition.”

Mike Swies

Convert Care Coordinator, Chicago

“Serving my community at Ta’leef has helped me learn more than I could ever imagine about myself. I have been honored to experience the most joyous, the most trying, and even the most painful of times. Service is our hustle. Compassion is our vehicle. God is our destination. I am thankful for being given an opportunity to try and be of use to my people.”

Shazia Malik

Volunteer Coordinator

“I’ve been volunteering at Ta’leef for a couple of years now and this place is deeply rooted within my heart. When I think of Ta’leef, the word family comes to mind because this place has given me a sense community that I’ve never felt anywhere else. Whether I’m making tea for the Mawlid or cultivating service within the new volunteers, you’ll always see me carry out each task with a smile.”

Sana Ahmed

Wellness Clinician

“Being a wellness clinician at Tal’eef is a means to fulfill why I entered this field in the first place. I was drawn to this work after observing the stigma around help seeking behaviors for mental health issues in our community and felt driven to do something about it. Here at Ta’leef, we look at wellness as a healthy, essential, and positive thing for self-care.”

Ibrahim Bengali

Volunteer Coordinator, Chicago

“Ta’leef is a home for hearts. It’s a place where we come to get healed by radiant love. We also have great oud… so you’ll always leave changed – inwardly and outwardly.”

Effie Gatsinos

Hospitality Coordinator, Chicago

“Taleef is a one of a kind, a unicorn per se, organization.
It brings people of different backgrounds and faith together in a way that touches the heart, mind and soul. You’ll always leave Taleef feeling full of love and knowledge and calling it home.”

Hala Mandil

Bookkeeper

“I love Ta’leef because of its ability to reach the heart of the youth and create a stronger connection between them and Islam. Ta’leef doesn’t turn anyone away, it is loving, with open arms.”

Aisha Ibrahim

Convert Support

“Ta’leef is a place where my heart feels content. A place where I can connect to my religious tradition while discovering the beauty of community over and over again.”