Local to the Core
I’ve lived in Hamilton for 41 years, arriving in this city at 5 years old back in 1972. I’ve done all my schooling here, attending the then Fifth Avenue Primary School and Silverdale Normal School, Berkley Intermediate and Hillcrest High School. I have a Bachelor and Masters in Management Studies from the University of Waikato.
Both of my children were born at Waikato Hospital, and have attended local schools. Hamilton is my home, and a community that I feel very connected to. You can read about my experience of growing up in Hamilton here.
I am fully qualified chartered accounting, with 20 years of practical experience. You can find out about the work I do at my firm’s website:
Her knowledge and experience, coupled with attention to detail see Anjum working on more complex accounting jobs and providing larger businesses with monthly reporting and management accounts. Anjum has specialist skills in financial reporting standards, taxation of investment income and farm accounting.
Not only do I have significant financial experience with business and farm accounting, I also serve as treasurer for a variety of not-for-profit organisations (see details below). I believe these are vital skills to bring to governance of Hamilton City. The Council is a not-for-profit organisation, so needs to be run in ways that are significantly different to a commercial business.
I have also served three years on the Legal Aid Review Panel, which gave some insight into the justice system of the country. Before working in private practice, I taught accounting at the University of Waikato for four years.
I am currently a trustee of two organisations: Shama (Hamilton Ethnic Women’s Centre) and the Waikato Community Broadcasting Charitable Trust – responsible for running Free FM (formerly known as Community Radio Hamilton). I bring the governance, financial and management skills from my educational background and my professional career to these roles.
I am a founding member of Shama, an organisation set up to provide support for ethnic minority women in the city in 2003. The organisation provides a range of services, including parenting classes, homework classes, cooking, craft & sewing classes, counselling services and support for those dealing with domestic violence. Our goal in setting up this organisation was to provide a network and source of support for ethnic minority women, some of whom deal with social isolation, language barriers and discrimination. It has been heartening to see the organisation grow stronger over the years.
I have been a trustee of the organisation that runs FreeFM since 2007, and have been involved in the transition of the station from the AM to the FM frequency. FreeFM provides an opportunity for community groups to access media and to have their voices heard in the local community. With the development of the Access internet radio project, FreeFM can now reach an international audience through live streaming on the internet and a range of podcasts.
I have been involved in range of other community organisations over the years. I have been a member of the Waikato Interfaith Council and have helped to organise two national interfaith forums in the city, in 2006 and 2012. I have also been involved in organising the commemoration of the 60th anniversary of the signing of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, as well as other events. This work is especially important in building bridges and social cohesion. The more diverse groups can get to know each other and work together, the stronger our community will be.
I have been active in both print and television media as a spokesperson for my community, and you can see further details on that on the media page of my website. I have also completed the Taku Manawa course in human rights, and have done my best to advocate for the rights of those who are marginalised as part of my community work.
I’ve been part of a group that develops leadership skills in young Muslim women, by providing a range of programmes including camps, caving, horse-riding, waka ama and a ski-trip. Each event includes an educational component, and I think this programme has been vital in helping these young women integrate into the local community while continuing to be proud of their own heritage.
I have been involved in the public submissions process of the Hamilton City Council, making submissions to limit the number of pokie machines allowed in a single venue, and also to restrict the areas of the city where brothels can operate.
Here’s a video where I talk about my background and explain why I’m standing for Council: