The Team

Salaam Shalom is grateful to the many people who have volunteered for and supported Salaam Shalom over the years, since it began in 2006.

Shabana Kausar is Salaam Shalom’s Manager. She has previously worked at Bristol City Council in delivering the National Preventing Violent Extremism Agenda. She is founding director of ‘The Sky Project,’ a charity that tackles forced marriage. Shabana is Chair of the BBC Trust’s Audience Council England West Panel and is also the South West’s representative of the national Young Muslim Advisory Group, where she advises the government on the engagement of young people.  Before being employed by Salaam Shalom, she was a committed volunteer who represented the organisation on an international level. She holds a degree in English and History and a qualification in Social Enterprise and Leadership.



Rebecca Bellamy is Salaam Shalom’s Programme Coordinator and has been working for Salaam Shalom since December 2010. She is also a multi-disciplinary Artist and she is studying an MA in Participatory & Community Arts at Goldsmiths (UCL), part-time. She has considerable experience leading creative projects and is educated in Management and Arts.




Mark Smulian is a Workshop Leader for Salaam Shalom. From a very young age the music of different cultures has affected Mark deeply and had an influence on his music and social commitment. Mark has lived in the UK, the USA and Israel/Palestine. In 1986 he formed together with Harold Rubin the band Zaviot that performed internationally on a regular basis. Mark has produced over 30 Albums in the ‘World’ music genre, some of which went gold and platinum, and 30 years as a bandleader. Guided by his steadfast belief in the power of good music, frustrated by the status quo, and seeking opportunities for change, Mark has led WhiteFlag, A Palestinian-Israeli street fusion band.Creating bridges for communication through music has become a central part of his life.



Karandeep Sahota is Salaam Shalom’s Educational Projects Officer. She support’s the development and delivery of Salaam Shalom’s Proud2B project. Karan is studying BA (HONS) Educational Studies at the University of the West of England.




Emily Durant is Projects Assistant for Salaam Shalom and a member of the Youth Council. She has worked in Arts Administration in and around Bristol, and helped deliver a number of arts and interfaith cultural events in the city. She has a degree in English Literature.




Board members have a wealth of experience in management and consultancy in the private, public and voluntary sector.

Martin Vegoda LL.B, MPhil (x2) - Trustee and Treasurer. After qualifying as a lawyer and a sociologist, Martin became a senior manager at Birmingham Social Services. He spent several years managing University research teams. Martin joined the Bristol University’s Social Work Department and School of Medicine, teaching trainee social workers, teachers, nurses and doctors about their future professional collaboration when working in the fields of child protection, learning disability and mental health.  He was a Secondary School Governor for eleven years, a member of Bristol Racial Equality Council Executive Committee for the same period, latterly Vice-Chair and then Chair for five years, and Chair for some years of Avon Citizen Advocacy.  Martin was a senior manager for Bristol Cyrenians, managing services offered to single homeless people.  He became a Non-Executive Director of Bristol North NHS Primary Care Trust and Chair of the Bristol Sure Start based in Easton.  Before retirement Martin worked as a management consultant in the voluntary sector.  He is a founder Board member of Salaam Shalom.


Peter Brill

Peter Brill- Trustee (BA (hons), DipJourn (Radio), MCIPR) – Former Chair and current Trustee of Salaam Shalom.  He is Managing Director of content specialists, Net.Mentor Ltd and a media and personal communications expert with extensive experience at a senior management level.   He was Head of Public Relations for RAC Motoring Services. He also spent five years in financial and sports broadcast journalism and was Media Conference Team Leader at the London 2012 Olympics and a Flash Quotes reporter in the main stadium during the Paralympics.

Peter has worked extensively for the charity sector.  He regularly raises funds for a number of chosen charities through activities such as trekking and cycling.  He is a Member of the Chartered Institute of Public Relations and is co-Author of the Not-for-Profit PR section of the PR Handbook (Ed. Theaker, 3rd & 4th Editions, Routledge).



Natalie Steadman- Trustee

Natalie grew up between Germany, Canada and Belgium. She moved to the UK in 2002 in order to attend university. She has a BA (Hons) in Cultural Studies from the University of the West of England and an MSc in Politics from the University of Bristol. She volunteered for youth and women’s rights projects during her studies. Natalie is Safeguarding Manager for the Public Protection Unit, with responsibility for Bristol. She manages 26 Police Officers and staff, who risk assess and respond to all initial reports of child abuse, domestic violence and vulnerable adults in the city. She also holds project portfolios, spanning from creating a network of safeguarding experts across the Force to improving information flow between schools, social services and the Police.



Nicholas Duffin / Amer Salman- Trustee and Chairman


Ruben Kostucki- Advisor to the Board, previously Trustee. Ruben grew up wanting to be an entrepreneur. This is why he started his first company at the age of fourteen selling edible pens and five years later, as a typical Zentrepreneur, he made a second attempt at entrepreneurship on an online venture in Warsaw, Poland. He has since co-founded Seeducation for which he has become an advisor, Redefine Us a training and digital marketing agency and Flavrbox, an online marketplace for independent food and drink producers.