My Story: Dawud Havard

From his home in Hebron, David ( aka Dawud) Havard walks a fine line, delicately balancing intensely fraught polarities, between Israeli soldiers and Palestinian civilians, between Jewish settlers and dispossessed Palestinians, between thieves and their families and communities, between extremists and happenstance victims of terror and crime. In the background Havard’s cat meows, cups of tea are sipped and children queue at a checkpoint to go to school. Normal life sneaks in between these starkly drawn lines.

Havard’s role in Hebron, West Bank is as manifold as the lines in this conflict. A volunteer human rights worker and observer, he has been adopted into a Palestinian family and is very much a member of this community. ‘I have spent all my life very active in peace and justice issues, both locally and as part of the global justice movement. It is my belief in God which motivates me and leads me to believe that we are all part of one human family, children of the one God. I follow where I think God is calling me and this has led to some strange places.’
Dawud Havard, the voice from Hebron, shares his experiences of being adopted into the Palestinian community, building dialogue and keeping hope alive.

Shailaja and Zubair. Love Jihad, Twenty Five Years On

For anyone in an interfaith, inter caste, Mixed or cross cultural relationship, there is hope, there is light at the end of the tunnel; and twenty five years on Shailaja and Zubair are proof, that inter faith relationships can be a success and a benefit to wider society.



Our weighty 33rd edition of GOLDENROOM Online Journal for Cross Cultural Relations, only requires a brief introduction.
With our theme this month of ‘Faith, Philosophy and Ethics’ we recommend setting aside adequate time to do full justice- and ensure full enjoyment- of the personal stories, pioneering research, topical analysis and business advice.
Gracing our cover this month are Shailaja Rao and Zubair Mohammad, who after twenty five years of interfaith marriage reflect on interfaith, intercaste relationships and the phenomenon of ‘Love Jihad’ in India today.
Wider interfaith relations are the subject of David, aka Dawud Havard’s story on his life in Hebron. Adopted by the Palestinian community, Havard’s multidimensional identity enables him to share his unique insight into the community’s challenges and capacities for dialogue in this timely article.
Author of ‘The Gori’s Daughter’ Shazia Hobbs, joins GOLDENROOM this month, to share her experiences and perceptions following the Rotherham paedophilia scandal, asking, ‘How Many More Rotherhams? Blame Paedophiles Not Brown Faces.’ Another author confronting the tangled interplay of identity and discrimination is Benjamin Zephaniah and we are recommending his novel- his first in seven years- ‘Terror Kid’ as a great read with which to curl up.
More on young people and children with our analysis, ‘Beyond Black and White. Ethnicity and Ethics in Adoption’ following new legislation which will delete ‘ethnicity’ as criteria in adoption matching. As is explained in the article, the adoption and fostering field has been in recent decades beset by competing and controversial perspectives on race and ethnicity, often with the poorest consequences for children of Mixed heritage. With the rise of Mixed and Multi ethnic people in wider society, will this legislation ensure better outcomes for looked after children?
A similarly rigorous piece, ‘Is Islam Compatible With Human Rights?’ focuses the dimension of faith and ethics. Complementing the tension between religious rights and wider human rights, we are recommending the film, ’Chariots of Fire’, which is based on a true story, of two athletes, one Jewish and one Christian. Thinking about ethics and how things should be, Disability Affairs Expert Victoria Richards brings us a well-researched article on the Medical Model of Disability, bridging theory and the personal experience in the first in a series on perceptions of Disability.
Social mores and values are most often reflected in our ideas about politeness and so we are delighted that in our new Business section, Cross Cultural Business Expert Gayle Cotton has shared her article on ‘Global Etiquette: Cultural Tips To Keep In Mind For Any Culture!’
We have taken an interfaith perspective in two of our articles this month. The first looks at the use of prayer or meditation beads across faith traditions and how they are being used today, by the Faith Network 4 Manchester to facilitate interfaith work. And we also looked at the prevalence and manifestation of the Golden Rule- the ethic of reciprocity and empathy- across faiths and philosophies. And if you would like the soundtrack to these inter faith explorations, then what better than Catherine Bott’s ‘Convivencia’ an original and beautiful aural testimony to this period of Spain’s history and to the ideal of living together.
It’s Black History Month this October, and also, at the end of the month, it’s Hallowe’en, so if you delight in a fright, have a read of our article: Vampires, Zombies and Jinn. They’re Everywhere.’
Even our entertainment recommendations this month resonate with the substantial discourses on ‘Faith, Philosophy and Ethics’ set in a Cross Cultural paradigm, which we are certain our readers will find intellectually invigorating as well as inspirational.
Kind regards,

Dr. W.J.Tuinstra
Editor in Chief
Online Journal for Cross Cultural Relations


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Curl Up With A Great Book, ‘The Social Licence. How To Keep Your Organisation Legitimate’

New book release will have you thinking about how you do business, ‘The Social Licence. How to Keep Your Organisation Legitimate ‘ by John Morrison


How To Have a Great First Date with GOLDENROOM Dating and it’s FREE to join!

GOLDENROOM Dating ( you to experience the excitement of making a cross cultural connection, which may lead to a rich, fulfilling relationship. All that begins with a Great First Date.

So you browsed through GOLDENROOM Dating Members, found lots of beautiful people and more than a few seemed really interested. After an exchange of messages, there was someone with whom you wanted to make a deeper connection. A long chat on Skype followed, maybe two. You shared, you laughed, and maybe some feelings began to blossom. As the old saying goes, you can’t judge a book by its cover. It’s time to meet in person.

Nothing compares to the rollercoaster of emotions relating to that first date, but there are a few tips to get the most out of the experience. Click here to find out more:


GOLDENROOM is the only umbrella organisation that recognises, represents and provides resources for all facets of cross cultural identity through the GOLDENROOM Online Journal for Cross Cultural Relations and our extensive networks and access to experts.

No other publication, nor organization exists to represent all facets of Cross Cultural identities and relationships, be these, Mixed ‘Race’/ Ethnicity, ‘Interracial’, Inter Faith, Inter Sectarian Bilingual, Dual Heritage, Dual- Nationality, Multi-Cultural and also Caste and Disability.

In addition to providing a platform for the voice of Mixed people and those  in Cross- Cultural relationships GoldenRoom is also the network junction for community centres, social organizations, government and business sectors representing multiple cultural groups and engaging with cultural communities different to their own.

Our Demographic

The UK has one of the fastest growing Mixed ‘Race’/ Ethnicity populations in the world. People of Mixed Ethnic heritage now represent 2.2% of the British population, more than any other ethnic group. The ‘Mixed’ population alone comprises a market total exceeding 4 million people and is larger than any other ethnic group in the UK.

Every year in the UK, more than 1 million couples with different ‘Racial’ or Ethnic backgrounds get married and begin rich and rewarding cross cultural relationships.  Figures for marriages between faiths, religions or sects are also continually rising; in Northern Ireland it is estimated that 9% of marriages are between Protestants and Catholics.

In 2010, the number of Americans who checked both “Black” and “White” on their census forms was 134 % higher than it had been a decade earlier. In total 9 million Americans identified themselves as Mixed ‘Race’ alone.

Citizens and Consumers, our demographic are adults with professional qualifications and in employment. They travel for business, for pleasure and for family and engage in diverse cultural practices. Their colleagues, business interest, friendships and most importantly, consumer preferences cross cultures, especially as their purchasing power rises.

The Business Imperative

Until now, Until GoldenRoom Online Journal for Cross Cultural Relations, all publications were unwittingly ethnocentric and so overlooked people of Mixed heritage or in Cross Cultural relationships as an important demographic and neglected them as a consumer market.

Likewise, until the GoldenRoom Online Journal for Cross Cultural Relations no publication, nor organization has included the business world as an important actor in cross-cultural relations. It is estimated that over 2/ 3 of all business in the UK have an overseas or cross- cultural component.  It is essential to recognise and include cultural knowledge in order to do business in today’s economy.

In the era of globalisation there has never been a greater need for cross cultural skills. If businesses could understand lingo and culture they could expand their operations and income by 30%.

GoldenRoom is the comprehensive organization with a cohesive publication to fulfill these gaps in the market, projecting cross cultural relations onto a dynamic, thought-provoking and popular media platform.

You can reach this niche market with exponential potential by advertising in our monthly journal. Our advertisers include businesses, but also charity and governmental organisations. We are also here to assist your needs to recruit personnel, research participants or advertise an Event.

As a business GOLDENROOM delivers both a product and service. Our online publication with impressive and quality content, appeals to both Popular and Highbrow tastes. Or access free advice from one of our experts, or find that niche cultural products or service from our networks.

Now approaching three years of recognising and representing cross cultural relations, our Goldenroom website is visited by over 3000 each month and our social media profile is fast approaching 1 million. GOLDENROOM is accessed by readers, subscribers and stakeholders from all over the world.

For a Free Media Pack please email: