Jackie was born in 1956 in Wallsend to her mother Sheila and father Jack Oliver, but brought up in Gateshead within a working class family. On raising a family of her own she settled in Scotswood in Newcastle where, 35 years ago, she began her work as a community activist. Jackie joined a women's group at Scotswood Community Project who would meet for two hours once a fortnight.

"We shared our experiences, our hopes and we educated ourselves."

For 20 years thereafter, she and other local women took collective actions to reclaim and regenerate their estate. Making positive changes would prove a challenge in the face of political and economic policies that stripped the community of jobs, proper housing and amenities as well as the ongoing threat of loan sharks, crime, intimidation and a decaying environment. 

Along with other locals, Jackie helped set up the Scotswood Community Credit Union, the first of its kind in the north east. They also established the Scotswood Area Strategy, a locally-led initiative working with the local authorities, police, statutory and voluntary organisations to address the priorities of the area. The initiative set up out of school clubs so parents could take up jobs or training and detached youth work projects that challenged negative street culture. 

"We campaigned tirelessly on anti-privatisation of school meals, transport and other services, challenging policy-instigated poverty through pragmatic responses."

In 1992, Jackie was awarded the Jameson Award for 'combating' urban poverty and an MBE for 'services to the community.' On recognition of the help received by others throughout her work, she used £25,000 of the money to set up the Jackie Haq Trust Fund for Scotswood which makes grants to community group who make a positive difference for others. The fund has since contributed to work by and with young people, parents and toddlers, senior residents and more broadly on domestic violence policy and practice. 

In 1997 at age 40, Jackie attended Newcastle University and graduated in 2000 with a First Class BA (Hons) in Sociology. In 2006, she was awarded a PhD for her ethnographic study, 'The borders and boundaries of community: social cohesion and responses to domestic and racial violence.'

Jackie now enjoys tribal belly dancing, labyrinth walking and Middle Eastern and African Drumming. She is deeply passionate and proud to be part of the continuum of collective action with women seen and unseen who are taking steps to change the world.