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The experience of leaving Islam is a devastating and traumatic ordeal for millions of people around the globe. As of 2021, leaving Islam is punishable by death in 12 Muslim-majority countries. In addition to state-sanctioned persecution, apostates in the Muslim world face the risk of social isolation, violence, imprisonment, torture, disownment and honour killing. While there are a range of support services available to ex-Muslims in the West, those who live in Muslim countries do not have this option.

 

Leaving any religion or fundamentalist group is hard. But for many, leaving Islam can be life threatening. Islam is regarded as much more than just a religion. It is a way of life. In fact, many countries have reflected this way of life within their judicial system, governing the lives of everyone in the nation with a strict and unforgiving legislative framework known as ‘Sharia’. Leaving Islam is considered to be one of the worst sins of all, with ex-Muslims branded as traitors, kaffirs, murtads, apostates, infidels and blasphemers. The experience of apostatising can lead to a range of issues, including:

 

  • Major decline in mental health

  • Suicidal ideation

  • Feelings of shame, worthlessness and despair

  • Forced marriage

  • Potential violence from family and/or community

  • Losing friendships lifelong friendships

  • Being abandoned and/or disowned by family 

  • Pressure and threats to re-join the faith

Who are we?

 

Free Hearts Free Minds is a not-for-profit agency that was founded in 2018 by ex-Muslim author, Yasmine Mohammed. Since then, we have grown to a small team of dedicated humans-rights defenders who are passionate and committed to supporting ex-Muslims.

 

Our Vision

A world where ex-Muslims are free to think and love without consequence.  

 

Our Mission

To support ex-Muslims living in Muslim-majority countries to live healthy, happy and meaningful lives.

 

Our Values

Liberation. Trust. Respect. Courage. Compassion.

What do we do?

Free Hearts Free Minds delivers a free 8-session psychosocial support program for ex-Muslims living in Muslim-majority countries. Our program was designed by qualified and experienced mental health professionals who have lived through the experience of leaving Islam. The session content has been designed using evidence-based techniques such as Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and Dialectal Behaviour Therapy. Each group will consist of up to 5 participants who will complete the entire program together.

 

The session topics are as follows:

 

  1. Identity 

  2. The Cognitive Triangle

  3. Resilience

  4. Managing Difficult Emotions

  5. Managing Stress

  6. Safety Planning

  7. Relationships

  8. Next Steps
     

The purpose of this program is to equip ex-muslims with important psychosocial skills designed to manage and overcome challenges and improve their overall wellbeing. In addition, we provide ex-muslims with a safe space to connect with like-minded individuals and develop their own community support network.

 

To access support from our service, please click ‘Contact’.

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