We are so excited to bring you a new feature . Starting on National women’s day, we are announcing our new weekly series- West Island Mom-Preneur . Every week we will feature a local west island mommy that has her own business and lives in the west island. It’s so important to support local and after the year we have had, we need to support our community more than ever. The month of March features, is sponsored by Plaza Pointe Claire– your one stop shop for your entire family needs.
We are so excited to introduce you to our first mom-preneur : Fariha Naqvi-Mohamed. A long time local west islander, entrepreneur, and blogger. We asked Fariha some fun questions about herself and her business – CanadianMomEh.com and FarihaNaqviMohamed.com. You can read all about it below. Please show some love and support local.
- What is the name of your business and what is it about?
I wear many hats (and hijabs). I am the founder and editor in chief of CanadianMomEh.com. It is the number one diversity blog in the country. I launched it almost ten years ago and while it started out as a lifestyle blog, it quickly morphed into a blog and platform to celebrate diversity in all its forms.
I’m also a Video Journalist for CityNews Montreal and an Op-Ed columnist for the Montreal Gazette. I recently launched FarihaNaqviMohamed.com so those wishing to follow my professional work, may do so with monthly updates via my newsletter. I am PR specialist and keynote speaker, specializing in all things diversity and inclusion.
2. How long have you been an entrepreneur and why did you become one?
I became an accidental entrepreneur almost a decade ago when I launched my blog. I stuck out like a sore thumb as a culturally diverse entrepreneur in an industry which, at the time, completely lacked any diversity at all. I learnt very quickly that brands were eager to work with someone who looked different, who had access to a highly engaged, culturally diverse audience. That is how my business started out. My journey truly began when I chose to be the truest version of myself without paying attention to what anyone else around me was doing. My only competition has only ever been, who I was yesterday.
3.What advice would you give to a Mom considering opening their own business?
Go for it. If you decide to open your own business, do it because you want to and because you believe in yourself. Don’t expect your family and friends to follow you. If you’re fortunate, they might, but don’t hold your breath. Never stop learning. Take courses, watch YouTube videos, Google how to do what you need to do. Figure out what problem you are going to solve, for the world and then do it. Be the change the world needs.
4.Seeing we are all about our West Island Community, where are your Go to places?
Where do I begin? Also, how much space do we have? I’m a foodie so let’s start there. As a fiercely proud West Islander, born and raised, there is no shortage of favourite places.
Let’s start with pizza (always a good place to start). My favourite pizza place in the West Island is Cugini’s in Beaconsfield. It is the Maserati of pizza places. I also enjoy Pizza Capitale in Pierrefonds and Pizzeria Bros.
If we’re looking at Indian food recommendations – If you’re looking for authentic cuisine, I would recommend Spicy Grille on Sources, followed by SpiceBros (love them because of their fusion flair).
For Italian – I love Monza, Vivaldi’s and Del Frisco’s.
For ice cream – my absolute favourite is Twist and Cream on Gouin near Sources, followed by Dolce Vita in Kirkland and Wild Willy’s.
For Middle Eastern food – Basha (both on Sources and St. Charles), Boustan and Tornade Snack on St. Jean. Grillades Al-Quds has some of the best middle eastern grilled meats you will find in the city. Chateau Kabob – the quality of this Persian food is second to none. Their customer service is the icing on top. Finally, also not quite Middle Eastern – is Aryana (Afghan food). This Mom and Pop’s restaurant has healthy, fresh, delicious meals that will make you feel like you’re having a meal at the Afghani grandmother’s house, you wish you had.
5. The past year has been a struggle for everyone, what has helped you the most get through it?
My family has always been number one for me. My dad’s health is rapidly deteriorating, and it has been a reminder to a) follow the rules when it comes to COVID guidelines, b) appreciate every moment and never take anyone or anything for granted. Friends, who have been like family have been a close second to getting me through this pandemic. Last but not least, my West Island pride. I love participating in local West Island groups, speaking with local foodies, getting recommendations, giving recommendations and coming together at a time when we all feel so isolated. I cannot wait until we’re out and about after the pandemic, to go out and meet so many of my amazing fellow West Islanders.
6. To wrap up, what are your must have items that you use or need everyday….
- A giant water bottle with a big mouth – an absolute essential. I never leave home without it. It’s the best way to stay hydrated.
- Canva – for all things business (whether it’s for creating graphics, Instagram posts or fun social media posts).
- A video doorbell – so important for both safety purposes as well as during COVID. You can simply ask whoever is at the door to either step back, leave your parcel at the door or to tell you how you can help them, without opening your front door.
- An Instant Pot – It has revolutionized how I cook for my family and meal prep for the week.
- When it comes to parenting teens – family group chats (both one on one and parents and child(ren). There is no replacement for speaking face to face however when parenting teens, that’s not always possible. Having family group chats has changed how we share pictures, videos, and communicate as a family.
I want to thank Fariha for being apart of our new series and for being so honest with all our followers. Please be sure to follow Fariha on all the social platforms. All the links can be found below.
If you would like to be featured as a local MomPreneur, click here to fill out the form. Please feel free to contact us for more information on becoming a monthly sponsor of the weekly series. You can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org