While the majority of Moroccan women's advocacy NGOs are concentrated in the urban centers of Rabat and Casablanca, numerous NGOs in smaller cities and towns across the country have emerged since the late 1990's to address problems unique to women in their regions. Local development associations (LDAs) in small towns and rural areas are increasingly integrating the promotion of women's rights into their general development activities (including health awareness, literacy, economic empowerment, and environmental protection).
IHRLG's Morocco team mentors and partners with a designated "community liaison" at women's advocacy NGOs and local development associations in underserved areas to
- Cultivate the advocacy and leadership capacity of young women's rights activists and facilitate their networking with their urban counterparts, from whom they would otherwise be isolated; and
- Facilitate mutual skill transfer through connecting women's advocacy NGOs, which possess greater experience in political engagement and women's rights advocacy, with local development associations, which have established a greater grassroots support base, a more diversified membership in terms of age and gender, and more democratic management processes.
Current IHRLG community liaisons are
- Fatima Ouaiaou, from the Association Amna (a women's advocacy NGO in Tangiers);
- Saida Azzouz, from the Association Intilaka pour le dıveloppement de l'environnement rural (a local development association in Ain Leuh); and
- Halima Oulami, who coordinates IHRLG relations and collaboration with local associations in the Tansift-El Haouz (Marrakech) region.
Fatima, Saida and Halima receive regular issue-based training on interacting with local administrative and justice systems, integrating international human rights standards and mechanisms into local advocacy efforts, and documenting and addressing human rights concerns in their home communities (such as the increasing number of girls and young women at risk of sexual abuse, slavery, forced labor and trafficking). In turn, they train members of their respective organizations and other local associations, and partner with IHRLG in implementing legal literacy and women's rights advocacy initiatives throughout the country.