Dr. Mariya Ali:
“Nothing is impossible…we just have to make it happen!”
My life was shattered at 7 years old, when I discovered that my father was imprisoned for life. He, along with 2 of his friends, were the first political dissidents wrongly sentenced at the beginning of a 30 year dictatorship.
Following my father’s imprisonment I received death threats, was bullied and found myself being isolated from friends and family. The extremely difficult challenges I faced, forced me to self-reflect.
I decided enough was enough!
I was not going to be bullied into silence. I was not going to allow myself to feel like a victim and have others define my life. I was going to define my own self!
It was liberating and gave me clarity on my Mission to make self-development and maintaining a healthy mind routine as mainstream as an exercise and healthy diet routine.
At national level, I have over 25 years of experience injecting creativity to translate international human rights laws into practical programmes. I served as Deputy Minister for Health and Family in Maldives and then transferred as Under Secretary to the Policy Office, at the office of the President of Maldives focusing on social policy.
At international level, as a governing board member, I played an instrumental role facilitating the successful transition of the South Asia forum into a permanent regional institution, the South Asia Initiative to Ending Violence Against Children (SAIEVAC).
Today I continue to research in the field of human rights as an Honorary Knowledge Exchange Associate of Oxford Brookes University, School of Law and sit on the advisory board for the International Child Redress Project, helping child victims of transnational sex crimes.
I am an award-winning women and children’s rights advocate. I was also selected as one of the 80 women around the world interviewed for London School of Economics study on women in public life titled “Above the Parapet” in 2013.
Through working in human rights, senior political positions, NGO’s, charities, as well as research and consulting roles; I have experienced and observed the psychology of success and personal transformation within myself and collectively within the organisations I have worked for.
~ Global Impact Award for Children’s Rights (2015) ~
~ Ten Outstanding Young Persons’ Award for Humanitarian Work (2010) ~
~ PHD in Human Rights (2013) ~
~ UNICEF International Human Rights Consultant (2006-present) ~
~ Under-Secretary to the President’s Policy Office, Maldives (2012-13) ~
~ Deputy Minister of Health & Family, Maldives (2009-11) ~
~ MA International Child Welfare (2000) ~
~ BA Social Work (1999) ~