As I was finishing secondary school, I remember numerous discussions in my home about how we would be able to fund going to college and being a full-time student. Luckily, we found out that we qualified for the EMA scheme. My family lived from week to week, and that £30 was totally significant and at times helped pay electric, gas and for other essentials.
'Asia' is formed of 48 countries, and extends right the way from Saudi Arabia to East Timor covering 30% of the earth's land (44,597,000 km2). Of course, within this area you have parts of the Middle East, Central Asia, South Asia, and South-East Asia.
The many events and discussions that have taken place around the UK during Black History Month, which draws to a close next week, have given us the op...
From a position of nigh-invisibility, for about 5 minutes in the 90s to be Asian was almost cool. I think as Citizen Khan has reminded us, we've come back down to earth since then, some would say with a bump that still resounds.
The marchers had dressed their cause with placards warning of "creeping Islamazation" and the "threat of Sharia", their chants hitting the more base notes of the late Oriana Fallaci, interspersed with modified songs from terraces: "We're the famous EDL".
Islam doesn't have a history of satire and Muslims don't take ridicule of our religion lightly. However, it seems that Muslims today measure their faith by how angry they get when offended.
The imprisonment of this Christian child isn't only about Pakistan or Pakistanis. Those of us who claim to be members of a global Muslim ummah cannot be silent when such flagrant human-rights abuses are committed in the name of Islam and in the world's second-biggest Muslim-majority nation.
Over 3000 Muslim athletes competed in the Olympics earlier this summer and at the same time it was Ramadan. Like thousands of my constituents in Leicester, many of those athletes will have observed the fast.
The racism was straight out of the traps when Ireland's Olympic boxing heroes won silver and gold in London. It was disheartening, predictable, and widely supported.
Words have consequences. Your recklessly inaccurate, inflammatory and irresponsible column only indulges the Islamophobic fantasies of the UK's violent, far-right crazies - and encourages them to make their vile threats. Frankly, you should be ashamed of yourself.
Now that the dust has long since settled from the Euro 2012 championships it is perhaps a chance to review the successes and failures of the tournament, not on the field but rather in terms of tackling the incidents of racism and antisemitism which I had been forecasting for many months.
Could this be, as Gordon Taylor suggests, a watershed moment in the FA's Respect campaign? And, preposterous as it sounds, I think John Terry could play a part.
Over a decade after the terrorist attacks on New York and Washington - and seven years after the London bombings - questions about Islam, Muslims and their place in the wider Western world continue to foment strong debate.
There were a fair few column inches devoted to a ruling in a German court that circumcision for non-medical reasons is an assault, and interferes with a child's right to determine his own religion. A number of commentators have said that the ruling amounts to some form of religious persecution against the Jewish and Muslim populations in the country, but in my opinion the courts are absolutely bloody right.
With the first census figures arriving today, we can expect a slew of alarmist stories about the dire demographic and social consequences of immigration. Many of these stories will cite public opinion surveys showing that the majority of British voters hold negative views about migration, and want it reduced.
In the hierarchy of hatreds Islamophobia sits near the very top, alongside every other form of prejudice that attacks a person for things over which they have no control.