Saturday was World Hijab Day, and the local organization Western New York Muslims celebrated the event by inviting the community to experience the head covering worn by some Muslim women.
Gatherings to raise awareness were held at the Walden Galleria and the Eastern Hills Mall, where tables were set up with hijab’s on display, hijabs to try on, and hijab selfie booths.
Coordinator Farina Mirza said information was shared to help explain why hijabs are worn and clear up misconceptions in the community.
“People get this impression when you’re wearing Hijab, that you’re very fundamentalist and strict,” said Mirza. “It’s just you discretion and it’s your own choice and, basically, it reflects modesty and nothing else.”
Mirza said about half of the Muslim women in Buffalo wear hijabs. There are several styles worn.
“It’s up to you,” Mirza explained. “There is one which covers your whole face. There is one in which only eyes are visible. There is one in which only your face is visible. It depends upon your own choice, upon your own comfort level. It’s like any other attire you wear.”
World Hijab Day is celebrated in February every year, but this was the first time WNY Muslims has taken part in the event since 2017.