Storying Sheffield

Living Histories: Nabeela Mowlana

Nabeela Mowlana is an active young woman, living, studying and working in Sheffield. She is originally from Sri Lanka and has Arab roots, too. Nabeela and her Mother left Sri Lanka in 2010 when she was 13 years old as her Mother had to move for study/work reasons. She distinctly remembers the 2– 3 days it took to make the quick decision to move and pack her bags to come to the UK, so there wasn’t much time to process it. There are many shared interests that Nabeela shares with her Mother, like reading and education as well as political organising, activism and creating change. This has helped navigate her journey through university and is an active member of the Sheffield Hallam Students’ Union. She also works in the community, like at Acorn and also works at Element Society on the National Citizenship Service.

Nabeela’s story is part of the ‘Displaced Migration: Living Histories project’ – a project by Element Society, and in partnership with Storying Sheffield at University of Sheffield, funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund. Element Society is a youth charity based in Sheffield delivering development, social action and enterprise programmes to young people and vulnerable adults.

These stories and the learning resource can be found at:

Element Society –

Storying Sheffield –

Sheffield Archives –