Finding Inspiration in Every Turn
Our aim is to support and provide ‘New Scots’ (refugees and asylum seekers) with mentorship, information, advice, and guidance that will support smooth transitions for living in Scotland, overcome cultural barriers, tackle discrimination and enhance their personal, social, and economic development.
One Community Scotland began life as a project of the Violence Reduction Unit. Khadija Coll, our founder was employed there as a Development Worker and it is within this role that Khadija reached out to New Scots living in Glasgow to give support with accommodation, poverty, gender based violence, mental health and cultural transitions. Thanks to the tireless efforts of everyone that has supported Khadija along the way, One Community Scotland successfully formed as a charity in 2020.
Our talented and committed Board are delighted to take forward the critical role of supporting young people and their families to flourish as Scotland welcomes new citizens. Approximately four hundred families have been helped through our early initiatives. This assistance has been provided in a variety of ways, ranging from advice to emergency food provision. However, we know that there are many more known and hidden challenges out there which can be overcome through binding together our knowledge, experiences, partner agencies and services so that everyone has a chance to fulfill their true potential, free from barriers, prejudice and discrimination.
Meet The Board
Khadija has worked with refugees and asylum seekers in Scotland and Africa for more than 25 years. She is a long-time campaigner against FGM and gender-based violence. Khadija assisted the Scottish Government with the campaign ‘One Scotland Many Cultures’ and lead the debate to legislate and combat FGM. The One Community Scotland founder was nominated for ‘Scots Woman of the Year’ for her work with FGM and gender rights. Khadija was awarded an MBE in the Queen's 2020 birthday honours for services to diversity and equality.
I did my Undergraduate at the University of Stirling in Spanish and Sociology and currently studying my MSc in Equality and Human Rights at the University of Glasgow. I have worked overseas mainly in Central/South America teaching English and doing voluntary work. My MSc research is centred on researching the intersectional health inequalities African women face in the Scottish healthcare system, and what Scotland can do to address this. Aligned with OCS's goasl and aspirations, I aspire to work with refugees and asylum seekers in Scotland, working collectively to ensure Scotland is a safe and welcoming place for them.
'I graduated from Dundee University with a Bachelor of Dental Surgery in 2018. Since then i have worked in not only general practice, but within the secondary healthcare system also. My training has involved working within Oral and Maxillofacial Units within the West of Scotland, and working close with A&E departments. While working in these posts it was eye opening to see the number of domestic violence cases and general violence and the impact it can have on ones family, which is why i wanted to get involved with OCS.
I am passionate about travelling and learning about new cultures, having carried out dental work abroad to deprived areas in South Asia.
I would like to use my experience to mentor young people and guide them to make better choices.’
Following a successful career in the Civil Service, covering a range of ministerial support, policy development, inward investment and project/programme roles, Mhorag took early retirement to pursue her own direction in life and 'give back' to society using her skills and expertise. A Chartered Member of the Chartered Quality Institute (CQI), she is also an elder and trustee of the Church of Scotland and a trustee of the Torrance Community Initiative in her home village. She is self-employed as an open water swimming coach and as a membership assessor for the CQI. As a board member of OCS, she hopes to advance her interests in justice, inward migration and quality management.
Dario has had an outstanding career in Police Scotland working in particular to transform communities with low levels of trust in the police. Examples include work with CIRV (Community Initiative to Reduce Violence), PSYV (Police Scotland Youth Volunteers) and more recently the VRU (Violence Reducation Unit) where he leads the Street & Arrow enterprise programme where people with lived experience of violent crime are given a second chance to learn skills to change their life and also become a good role model for their children; whilst showing others in the community that a positive future is possible.
Dario has an advisory role with OCS as he supports them to become a strong and active charity for BAME communities.
With a legal background in immigration and asylum, I have spent a great deal of time working with vulnerable communities in Glasgow.
Along with offering advice and support to refugees at different stages of their asylum process, I felt it was necessary to become more involved in helping new Scots settle into the city.