Payzee Mahmod

Campaigner against child marriage

A survivor of child marriage, who lost her sister Banaz in a tragic “honour” killing, Payzee’s focus to prevent “honour” based abuse and child marriage could not be more personal. A Kurdish immigrant, raised in London, with a successful career in the fashion industry, she uses her voice to speak out as a survivor – not a victim – and has made it her mission to be a changemaker, helping to tackle these harmful practices.

Payzee’s first step on this journey was to publicly share her sister’s story at Karma Nirvana’s Day of Remembrance in 2019. As an IKWRO ambassador and campaigner, her story and experiences have reached international audiences, including the Kurdish community. As well as sharing her own story, she has spoken widely on the need for changes to the laws surrounding child marriage and “honour” based abuse across radio, television and newspapers, including The Sunday Times and the BBC. Through meeting with government officials and the Home Office Minister to explain first-hand why change is needed, Payzee and IKWRO campaign for better education, training and legislation to finally make child marriage a crime.          

As a fashion enthusiast, Payzee draws on her kurdish roots and everyday life in London to inspire her handmade clothing designs. She loves the buzzing atmosphere of London and also travelling and discovering new places. 

Favourite TED Talk:

Khadija Gbla My Mother’s strange definition of empowerment

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