Moroccan | Scottish

Sophia Lharri.jpg

My mum is Scottish and my Dad is Moroccan, they met in London. I've lived in London my whole life. 
When I was young I thought it was normal that my dad was from one place and my mum was from another place.

I went to a multicultural school where everybody was so proud of where they came from. I was really proud of my mum being Scottish and my dad Moroccan. People kind of looked to me like ‘oh I’m Nigerian and I’m like really proud of being Nigerian’. ‘I’m Chinese and I'm really proud of being Chinese’, so yeah I'm half Moroccan and I'm really proud of that too. It was exciting, until I went to university, then I realised that it's not common to be mixed-race. 
When I was in secondary school, I was really proud of where I was from because everyone was like, ‘oh, I belong here and I belong there'. But then I didn’t realise kind of what that entailed until I got older I think I’m realising actually that I need to ‘learn’ to want to be part of this, it’s so important now for my own identity. In those days it was on a superficial level but now I want to go deeper to understanding where my parents came from and what they had to do to get here. I guess that is a coming of age.

I have work in multicultural schools where most of the kids are very proud of where they come from, the first thing they say to me is; ‘I am from' and even want to know where I am from. In the beginning I was very nervous, especially in regards to religion. I'm not a religious person and people associate being Moroccan and Scottish with Christianity or Islam, but the kids in the schools kind of tackle that and say well not everybody does things this way and I feel like the new generation of kids are really open to understanding that. 
I don’t like it when people come up to me in the street or like I’ve met somebody and they say, ah ‘what are you’, or they look and kind of tip their head and they’re like ‘Well you're not from here’ or ‘what are you’.

I feel like my experience being mixed race has been quite positive, I think that if your parent’s are from different countries and of different cultures you should really embrace it.