Our youth-led heritage project, was funded by Young Roots of Heritage Lottery Fund, and set out to empower young women (aged 16+) to explore and preserve the hidden history of the changing role of Muslim women’s participation in sporting events in the UK since 1948 to the present day. The project used a mix of archive research and oral history interviews with different generations of Muslim women. It charted the changes in society and also provided a platform for the hidden voices of Muslim girls and women in the UK. The project’s historical findings were presented as a youth-led short film comprised of archive images with voice over narratives from the project’s young Muslim women and extracts from interviews. The main exhibition space for the film was at The Women’s Library (based of London Metropolitan University) which houses the most extensive collection of women’s history in the UK.

In the project a group of young Muslim Women aged 16-25 were recruited (July 2011) to document Muslim women’s participation in sport from 1948 to the present day and preserve the current views of Muslim girls and young women towards sport. These volunteers received training from both IARS and the London Metropolitan University.  Over a number of months volunteers on this project conducted numerous interviews with Muslim women living in London about their participation in sport and undertaken archival research at The Women’s Library in East London. Our group of volunteers have now completed the archive research and oral history interview filming. Three days of editing took place in February 2012, and the film was screened in May 2012. Click through to watch:

Through a youth-led methodology, to explore, document and preserve the heritage of the UK’s Muslim women’s participation in sporting events covering the period of 1948 – today.

  • Skill-up and provide an opportunity to young women, including young Muslim women to lead on the project, and learn, reflect and document their 60 years history in sports
  • To ensure that amidst the sporting achievements of the Games that history and culture of one of the UK’s minority groups is not forgotten but documented, disseminated and celebrated
  • Create bonds between different generations of Muslim women and encourage the exchange of ideas, historical facts, cultural historical facts and historical challenges


We are Sculpt

IARS International Institute to operate as Sculpt

*Charity CEO available for interview – details in notes 

A UK-based youth charity today changes its operating name from the IARS International Institute to Sculpt. 

IARS is an international NGO that’s been working to empower young people to forge a fairer society for over 20 years. Their work is guided and evaluated by young people themselves.  

Over the last 20 years, IARS has delivered more than 70 successful projects that have addressed real problems that young people face, in areas such as: 

  • Gender discrimination 
  • Violence against women and girls 
  • Supporting young people to find work 
  • Creating green and sustainable business 
  • Promoting collaboration among young people across the world and much more. 

In 2021, with the world changing rapidly and opportunities for their work shifting, they decided to refresh their purpose and identity, and made the decision to rebrand as Sculpt. 

Claire Bonham, Chief Executive of Sculpt, said: 

‘We are delighted to launch our new brand that speaks to our aim to empower young people to shape their future.

‘We believe that many of today’s young people are facing unjust challenges – economically, environmentally and socially. A fair, sustainable society can only evolve if all young people have the opportunities, the confidence, the ambition and the skills to make their voices heard and propel change in their communities, irrespective of who they are or where they come from.  

‘Our rebrand, like our work, has been guided by research and by young people themselves. As an organisation we base our work on rigorously researched evidence and are led in our approach by our youth advisory board. Their voices and insight are critical to solving the right problems in meaningful ways.’  


Notes to editors:  

Dr. Claire Bonham, Chief Executive of The IARS International Institute is available for interview. Contact Claire directly on: +44(0) 7833 224442  


Sculpt is a UK-based charity providing research, training and work-experience opportunities that empower young people to shape their own futures and those of their communities. 

We work directly with young people, employers and professionals who support young people. All our work is guided by young people themselves and based on carefully researched evidence. We: 

  • Facilitate forums for young people to make their needs and their voices heard. 
  • Publish a magazine by young people to express their perspectives and encourage debate around public policy issues. 
  • Conduct research to uncover young people’s real needs and what works to empower and support them. 
  • Deliver training to build young people’s confidence, skills, ambition, resilience and sense of responsibility, so they can shape their futures and change their communities for the better, as leaders, social entrepreneurs and active participants in civic life. 
  • Deliver training for professionals who work with young people, drawing on our research and expertise. 
  • Engage with employers to facilitate work experience and employment opportunities for young people to develop skills and access diverse jobs. 
  • Facilitate international exchange opportunities to encourage and enable young people to experience and appreciate other cultures, perspectives and ways of life. 

We tackle disempowerment from three angles: working directly with young people to build confidence and skills and their voice, working with professionals who support young people, and working with employers to break down barriers to opportunity.