Meghan promotes female education as she tours Morocco with Harry

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are on a three-day tour of Morocco. Credit: PA

High up in Morocco’s famous Atlas Mountains, there are very few secondary schools.

While that makes it difficult for all teenagers to get a good education, it’s particularly tough for girls.

So, in many socially conservative families, they prefer to keep their daughters at home rather than send them the long distance to school.

You can see why then, a project which is transforming attitudes to female education in the Moroccan mountains is something the Duchess of Sussex wanted to visit.

Meghan has often spoken of her desire to promote female empowerment and to improve life chances for young women through education.

For Meghan, this trip to North Africa is her third continent in less than a week - despite being nearly 8 months pregnant. Credit: PA

Morocco’s Education for All charity is currently building its sixth boarding house - where girls can safely stay close to a secondary school - with the full approval of their parents.

And it’s to one of those boarding homes where Harry and Meghan will travel Sunday.

In the village of Asni, in the hills above Marrakech, the royal couple will meet girls - from ages 12 to 18 - who wouldn’t otherwise be getting an education.

Instead, 9 out of 10 of the girls in the Education for All boarding homes pass their exams and get the necessary grades to study at university.

Asni is a small town in the foothills of High Atlas mountains, near Marrakech. Credit: AP

Harry and Meghan will also honour the founder of the charity, Michael McHugo, a Briton who runs a trekking hotel in the mountains which helps to fund the building of the boarding houses.

Mr McHugo was awarded an MBE in the New Year’s Honours List and he’ll be invested by Prince Harry today on the roof of one of the homes.

Asni is the first stop for the royal couple, after Saturday night’s official welcome, on their three-day royal visit to Morocco - which has been arranged at some haste.

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Diplomats say Morocco is the most stable country in a region of instability - and they are keen to promote ties with the country which government officials say could be an ‘entry point’ into Africa for the UK after Brexit.

But while those diplomats point to the trip’s focus on the changing social attitudes towards women in Morocco, the country’s most high profile woman - the wife of the King - hasn’t been seen in public since 2017.

Princess Lalla Salma is reported to be living in America (some others have suggested Greece) - but because of the secrecy surrounding the Moroccan Royal Family - no one knows where she is or whether King Mohammed VI and his wife are still married.

Princess Lalla Salma, wife of King Mohammed VI, seen here shaking hands with French President Macron, has not been seen since 2017. Credit: AP

For Meghan, this trip to North Africa is her third continent in less than a week - despite being nearly eight months pregnant.

She celebrated her baby shower with friends on a private visit to New York last week before returning to the UK and then flying to Casablanca on a commercial plane with her husband last night.