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The Mindful Muslim is an Inspirited Minds podcast that hosts raw, open, and honest conversations on various topics within the sphere of mental health, psychology, Islam and spirituality.

This time we have a candid conversation with Suhayl. Our host, Meanha Begum, dives into Suhayl’s lived experience of gambling addiction and suicidal thoughts, and has struggled immensely in dealing with the consequences, shame and stigma surrounding it. He has shown great courage by speaking and conducting workshops at Masaajid, Madrasahs and community-based events to help those who are struggling, including family and friends.

He is primarily responsible for the development of culturally appropriate support and resources at Beacon Counselling Trust. This has been fundamental in helping to reduce the stigma around gambling-related harm and facilitate treatment referrals from the BAME (Black, Asian and Minority Ethnicities) communities.

Through his experience, he discusses:

  • The problem of gambling addiction, how/why it can cultivate and its underlying emotions, thoughts and feelings.
  • The cycle of addiction with concurrent stigma, shame, and a lack of belonging.
  • How escapism acts as a vehicle to addictive behaviours – Strong cultural barriers to seeking help, support and counselling.
  • The urgent need for compassion, empathy and open pastoral discussions in a community setting.
  • The lack of Muslim representation in matters that affect the Muslim community.
  • The journey towards recovery, preventing relapse and reconnecting with a sense of belonging.

The Beacon Counselling Trust has a Free 24-hour National Gambling Helpline Number at 0808 8020 133.

If you would like to ask us a question, suggest a topic you would like us to discuss on the podcast or if you would like to feature on the podcast as a guest, then please get in touch with the Mindful Muslim Podcast Team at

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Sivan Kader

Sivan is a Biomedical Sciences and Clinical Neuroscience graduate from Queen Mary, University of London and King’s College London. She hopes to combine her learning from personal experience with mental illness, with the passion to drive positive change, to ultimately empower others to take care of their mental wellbeing. With a background in research, and having worked with a social enterprise, she has joined Inspirited Minds to help shed light on mental health stigma in the Muslim community, in particular, and work towards encouraging dialogue, empathy, and compassion.

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