Char Nair-Gafur: An Influential South Asian Woman

IMG_0639
Picture via Char Nari-Gafur

The South Asian Woman magazine is popular for the South Asian community in Surrey. It offers fashion articles, relationship advice, wedding and style pages, food, art and entertainment, health and career advice and more. Wonder what it would be like writing for a magazine, a blog or perhaps being a social media manager? One woman does this all and much more.

Char Nair-Gafur is a hard-working woman who is a social media manager, an associate editor and a writer for the South Asian Woman (SAW) magazine. She is a successful woman who is constantly sitting at her laptop and typing away throughout her days. As a social media manager, Nair-Gafur manages and promotes events for the magazine through social media such as Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram and YouTube. As an associate editor, she does all the editorial work, connects and recruits writers on various topics, edits articles and videos, makes final calls on articles, helps organize photo shoots and arrange fashion photos, attends and covers events, does book reviews and also helps with designing the magazine.

Not only does Nair-Gafur work with SAW magazine, she also works for the University of British Columbia as an educational program assistant and is exploring her options in completing a Bachelors of Arts degree in Psychology. She is also a recording artist, currently working on a track that she wrote for her grandmother, who recently passed away. “My husband and I are in talks of also opening up our own catering business. So, right now I have a bunch of exciting projects on the go that I am looking forward to,” she said.

At the age of six, Nair-Gafur began writing a diary. In 2012, after going through a rough first marriage, she steered all her emotions into writing. “I found it to be therapeutic,” she said.

Nair-Gafur began writing for SAW Magazine in 2012, after contacting Sunita and Vijay Kapoor, editor and publisher of SAW magazine.

“It was because of the opportunity that they gave to me that I progressed further within the company as they gave me the position of Associate Editor and Social Media Manager,” she said.

Nair-Gafur never went to school to become what she is today. Her educational background is in law. At first she was a loss prevention’s officer and detainee officer and was close to becoming a police officer. She also obtained a certificate as a probation officer. She changed her career path when she realized that her creative side is something she excelled better in.

“The one thing that I strongly believe in is, if you have the drive to do something, no school or degree can make you do it better. Although I went to school for marketing, I never went to school to become an associate editor or social media manager,” she said. “I do my job with interest and have learned what I do through experience, training and research. I believe the strongest form of education is being self-taught. It sticks with you and the knowledge is priceless. Also, Sunita and Vijay have never stopped believing in me and have taught me so much through their own knowledge, which I can confidently apply to my own job skills.”

She works seven days a week and her hours vary. She can go from a short, simple day of four hours, to a long, tiring day of 12. “The biggest thing is how you balance your work life and personal life, make sure you take time out for yourself,” she said.

The pros of doing what Nair-Gafur does is learning new things every day and incorporating that into her own life.

“I think this job has opened me up more as a person and I’ve become more connected to the South Asian culture which is inspiring. It’s opened up my eyes to so many different possibilities and it really has shown me how far South Asians have come. I’m proud of our culture,” she said.

Travelling, which is sometimes involved with the job, is a fortunate pro. Nair-Gafur gets to go to events and is surrounded by a social environment thanks to SAW. The cons of her job is like any other job — it has its up and downs.

As a young girl, Nair-Gafur dreamed of writing her own book, becoming a singer and working for a company where she is able to express herself. Currently, she is working on the winter 2015 Issue for SAW magazine. With the love and support of her family and husband, who are constantly encouraging her every step of the way, she feels as if she is at a stage in her life where she feels successful because of all the goals she has reached.

Her advice for someone who wants to pursue the same goals as her and work in the same field is that researching the job you want is the most important thing to do.

“I would have to say to research about the job you want to get into,” she said. “Know your audience/readers. Make sure you will be able to apply and bring forth what it is that they want to see. Keep engaging with them and stay up to date with how the world is evolving, as it plays a huge part in how you deliver your final product and how everyone perceives you as a person.

“I don’t think I would do anything differently. Everything fell into place for me at the right time.”

Follow Char on Twitter: https://twitter.com/chargafur

Check out the South Asian Woman magazine by clicking this link: http://www.southasianwoman.ca/

Screen Shot 2015-12-10 at 3.35.06 PM

Photo via homepage of SAW magazine

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.