Windsor hospital invites people to try on the hijab for World Hijab Day

World Hijab Day celebrations are underway at Windsor Regional Hospital, where visitors, staff and patients are encouraged to learn about the hijab and try one on.

There are booths at Windsor Regional Hospital where people can learn about the hijab

Lina Chaker welcomes people to ask questions about what it's like to wear the hijab. (Katerina Georgieva/CBC)

Windsor Regional Hospital is celebrating World Hijab Day, a day marked since 2013 to encourage women of all backgrounds to try on a hijab.

The hospital's diversity committee will have booths set up at the Met and Ouellette campuses, explaining why the hijab is worn and visitors will be invited to try one on.

Lina Chaker, who volunteers with the Windsor Islamic Association, sees the day as an invitation for people to see how wearing the hijab influences their daily life.

"[The hijab] means something different for every single person," said Chaker.

For her? It's a way to strengthen her relationship to God.

Are you pressured to wear the hijab?

4 years ago
Duration 1:10
Ruaa Farhat and Lina Chaker explain some misconceptions people may have about those who wear the hijab.

People who are unfamiliar with the hijab or have questions are more than welcome to ask questions, according to Chaker.

Ruaa Farhat, a 4th year social work student at University of Windsor, echoes that sentiment.

"It's understandable, because some people just don't know," said Farhat.

Commonly asked questions include: do you sleep with it on? To which the answer would be no, she doesn't.

Any misconceptions?

Farhat and Chaker both started wearing the hijab at around 6th grade.

"A lot of times we think about people being pressured to wear the hijab. But I think over here in Canada, the trend is actually people tell you not to wear it," said Chaker.

She remembers her family telling her that she was still young, that she didn't need to wear it. And her mother was worried about her being bullied in school if she wore one.

Farhat said she's had to explain that it's so liberal in Canada and that there's no pressure.

"So the fact that I am wearing it, shows that I'm doing it out of my own will," she said. She feels wearing one is a representation of her true self.

Farhat and Chaker say there are many styles to the hijab and people wear it in many ways.

"Some people like certain colours more than others," said Chaker. She personally prefers not to use pins and to have fewer layers.

To learn more about the hijab, people are invited to stop by the Met Campus Friday from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., and the Ouellette Campus Friday from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.

With files from Katerina Georgieva