Aliyah Zeien is 24 years old and was born in New Orleans, LA. She is the oldest of 5 siblings. She spent 5 years in the foster care system in Louisiana and aged out in 2014.
In 2013, she began her undergraduate degree in social work at Southeastern Louisiana University as an early start student. Graduating with her bachelors degree in Social Work is what Aliyah describes as her proudest accomplishment. The experiences, obstacles, and barriers faced while in the foster care system instilled the passion in Aliyah to work with youth transitioning out of foster care.
She also currently owns a business called LiLi’s Heavenly Sweets & Treats which is based in Hammond, LA. She sells Personalized gift baskets for all occasions/holidays as well as sweet treats of all kinds. She has enjoyed becoming an entrepreneur and making her customers, and their loved ones happy.
Some of Aliyah’s other noteworthy accomplishments include completing the legislative internship in Louisiana, where she advocated for the passage of the Extended Foster Care Bill and its $3 million fiscal note. Shortly after this she became the communications officer for the Louisiana State Youth Advisory Board, during which time she has become a co-author to develop Senate Bill 224-the first official foster care bill of rights in Louisiana. Aliyah has also spoke at various child welfare conferences such as Together We Can to bring awareness to Foster Care.
She was recently accepted into the LSU advanced standing MSW program and starts in October, and she looks forward to furthering her education. Her goals after graduation consist of opening a non-profit foundation that will work directly with youth aging out of care to ensure they have a stable permanency plan, and financial security. Her purposeful passion is advocating on behalf of and helping youth in foster care to ensure their voice is heard. Aliyah states that 10 years ago while she was still in the foster care system she never imagined she would be where she is today.