Mahjaben Shabbir Basri
Recipient of the Jamiyah Exemplary Mother Award in 2010
Mrs Mahjaben family’s life had been filled with trials and tribulations and despite the odds, she succeeded in overcoming them. Mrs Mahjaben came to Singapore from India hardly knowing her husband or his family. A new country, a totally new life and to top it all, a big challenge. Mrs Mahjaben also had a tough time with difficult in laws, an ailing child and compounded with financial difficulties.
Buying a 3 room HDB flat as a shelter for the family was itself a harrowing venture as her husband was then earning only $450 per month. Medical expenses incurred for her ailing daughter added to the financial burden to the family. Nonetheless with her prudence and faith, Mrs Mahjaben managed the house and by saving every penny, she bought basic necessities like pots and pans. Even a refrigerator and a washing machine was a luxury to her and family. To ease the financial burden, Mrs Mahjaben started giving tuition to school children, applying henna painting for brides and other odd jobs.
Mrs Mahjaben is an active lady. She joined Resident’s Committee as Secretary and later as Chairperson, Indian Activity Executive Committee (IAEC), SINDA, CCC, PCF Kindergarten and Narpani Pearavai on top of her involvement on Burhani Group and Tsao Foundation.
Though working and volunteering long hours, she devoted quality time to her family. The sacrifices Mrs Mahjaben eventually saw her 3 children graduating, a daughter with a diploma in Optometry, and another daughter with a Diploma in Psychology while her son is in National Service.