Executive Director & President
Ishrat Husain was born in Aligarh, India. He grew up in Karachi and migrated to the US in 1966. He has a bachelors (Univ. of Karachi), and masters degrees (Univ. of Pennsylvania) in Physics, and a masters (Fairleigh Dickinson Univ) in Electrical Engineering. Ishrat retired from IBM in 2013, and joined Rahima in 2014 as its Executive Director and President. Ishrat is married to Habibe Husain, the founder of Rahima Foundation, and has been involved with Rahima since it’s founding in 1993.
Ambreen Jamal Vice-President & Program Director
Ambreen Jamal joined Rahima in March 2018 with an extensive non-profit background—she was President of DIL (Developments in Literacy) for several years, and she is currently volunteering at KIVA — a global non-profit organization that provides interest-free loans to low-income entrepreneurs to start or expand small businesses. Over the years, Sr. Ambreen has also built a wide network of people, not only in the non-profit sector, but also with the city and county officials.
Aida Hamshari, born in Mukkala, Yemen, was the 4th of 12 children in her family. She came to the United States in 1976 on a full Daly Scholarship from World Airways to attend Santa Clara University. There she met her husband, Gamini Rajapakse, who is from Sri Lanka, and married him in 1980. She earned her BA in Finance and graduated in 1981. Aida went on to work as a corporate accountant for the next 10 years at Logistics, FMC and Dataquest. For over 12 years, she has been working at the University Finance Office at Santa Clara University. In addition to her work, Aida has taught Sunday School for over 10 years, and been involved in various community activities such as visiting prisons, community diversity, and interfaith programs. Aida has been with Rahima Foundation since it’s inception, helping Rahima collect canned food from the community on Fridays and distribute to the local needy. Aida and her husband are in charge of Rahima’s activities in East Bay, delivering food to needy families on a monthly basis. She also keeps tabs on the financial activities of Rahima Foundation, as our Treasurer. Aida is married with two children, Thamer and Thanna, who have been Rahima volunteers since a very young age.
Sharifa Ma, Secretary
Sharifa Ma, was born and raised in Taiwan. She received her BS degree in Chemical Engineering from National Taiwan University and completed her MS degree from University of Wyoming. Currently, she is supplier quality specialist at Air Liquide. She has been with Rahima Foundation since 1994, and has held various responsibilities throughout the years. Along with her involvement with Rahima, she has been volunteering as a Sunday Islamic School teacher, and has been part of several social services activities in the Bay Area. Sharifa has a son, Yusuf, who has also been involved with Rahima since a very young age.
Fareena Syed, Vice President
Fareena Syed was born and raised in England. She completed her education there and moved to the Bay Area. She is married to Shafath Syed and lives in Sunnyvale with their daughter, Imaan. Fareena worked for 15 years at Visa in Treasury Management, but decided to take a career break to take care of her daughter. She has been part of the Rahima family for many years and was the President for three years.
Shakila Cochinwala, Vice President
Shakila Cochinwala was born and raised in Karachi Pakistan and immigrated to the United States in late 1993, she did her Bachelor in Commerce from the University of Karachi.
She started at a very young age to volunteer at various centers to provide education and healthcare to underprivileged kids.The passion continued in the United States where within her first year of the move she started volunteering at the American Diabetes Association.
In the following years she had the opportunity to give back at her kids schools in various capacities currently she volunteers for NISA and is actively involved in a family run charitable hospital in Karachi,Pakistan.
Shakila Cochinwala resides in Sanjose with her husband and two wonderful kids.