Lamia Bazir is a young change maker and an Advocate for Women and Girls. She is the founder of Empowering Women in the Atlas and was the Executive Director of the National Observatory for the Rights of the Child, chaired by Her Royal Highness Princess Lalla Meryem
Born in the port city of Mazagan (El Jadida, Morocco), Lamia nurtured an interest in and a commitment in favor of the most disadvantaged. Her volunteering activities and contact with different populations enabled her to acquire a more sophisticated understanding of her society and to gain values of empathy, persistence, and hope; thereby reinforcing her will to have a positive impact.
Aware that knowledge is a strong weapon in promoting change, Lamia bazir got passionate about her own education. In 2008, she obtained a Baccalaureate in Economic and Social Sciences with the Highest Honors from the Lycée Jean Charcot in El Jadida. Then, she enrolled in Al Akhawayn University (Ifrane, Morocco), where she specialized in Political Science and the Middle East and North African region, and chose a minor in Women’s Studies. In 2012, after four years of academic inquiry and dedication, she obtained a Bachelor’s of Arts in International Studies with Summa Cum Laude, being both the Student Valedictorian and the Speaker for her Class.
Committed to deepen her knowledge and enrich her perspective, Lamia got accepted to an intense dual degree program and continued her education. She earned a Master’s in International Development from Sciences Po Paris, and a Master’s in International Affairs, with a specialization in Economic and Political Development from Columbia University. During her stay in New York, Lamia showed an exceptional sense of ethics and dedication to others. Hence, she was selected to win the prestigious “Harvey Picker Prize for Public Service” awarded by the School of International and Public Affairs in 2014.
However, Lamia Bazir never got satisfied with academics, she enriched her learning through a continuous exposure and involvement in both the professional world and on the ground. In parallel to her studies, Lamia Bazir continued to build proximity and friendship with locals. In 2012, she founded her own social venture Empowering Women in the Atlas where she dedicates, until today, to support rural women gain leadership in order to foster sustainable community development in the Atlas Mountains of Morocco. In 2014, she also carried field research for Transparency International on the theme of Women and Corruption in Niger, and in 2010 she volunteered to support single mothers for Solidarité Féminine in Casablanca, Morocco.
During her stay in New York, her outspokenness and innovative ideas for gender equality got her selected to represent the “Third World Network” at the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations. Lamia Bazir also got the exceptional opportunity to intern for the Arab League during the Arab Spring in 2011; thereby, gaining a comparative and regional understanding of the uprisings in the region.
Right after completing her studies, Lamia Bazir made the choice to return to Morocco and not to remain abroad. Indeed, she committed to invest her education, experience, and passion in and for her country.
From 2014 to 2017, she worked for the Office of the Head of Government on a 517 million USD cooperation program between the United States and Morocco aiming to reduce poverty through economic growth. In her work, she focused on projects linked to Education and Youth Employability.
She was appointed in September 2018 as the New Executive Director of the National Observatory for the Rights of the Child a national institution chaired by Her Royal Highness Princess Lalla Meryem, with the mission to work with the Government, international organizations and NGOs to advance children’s rights in Morocco. At the same time, she carries her advocacy and humanitarian initiatives in favor of rural women and girls, and disadvantaged youth and children.
Her achievements and dedication got her recognition in Morocco and worldwide. She is nominated by the Humanitarian Awards Global as one the most distinguished women change makers in Africa for the year 2020-2021. In 2019, she was selected among the 100 most influential young leaders in Africa by the Youth Africa Award. In 2018, she is selected as one of the Young Arab Leaders by the World Government Summit in Dubai. In 2015, she won the United Nations Volunteering Award. In 2016, she was the youngest to be selected among the 60 most influential women in Morocco by Challenge. In 2013, she was selected as a Fellow of the American Association of University Women in Washington DC.