NEWSLETTER SIGN UP

New Voices to the Old: Sprouting Progress in Marrakech’s Mellah

Mellah3

By Aichatou Haidara & Aanya Salot

HAF Interns

On the 24th of May, the office of the High Atlas was brimming with a total of 91 people as the High Atlas Foundation staff and the people of Marrakech’s Mellah gathered for Iftar, the breaking of fast. Marrakech’s Mellah proves to be a religious and geographical testimony to the historic coexistence of the Jewish minority within the Muslim community, in an economically vulnerable setting. These members of the community who attended the event were divided into three rooms, each, equipped with at least one High Atlas Foundation staff member that lead the project prioritizing sessions.

Meanwhile, the rest of the staff was floating from room to room ensuring that everyone could satiate their hunger from the long day of fasting with the help of some of the women and some very eager kids. Most notably, there was a young girl who could not have been more than 12 years old who goes by Amina. From the time she entered the office to the time she left, she never stopped helping by either handing out food or by taking back empty trays. After conversing with some of the women from the Mellah and observing the various rooms, it became very clear why Amina had such a commendable character. The women who filled the office of the High Atlas Foundation were resilient individuals who have an optimistic demeanor and inviting personalities despite the hardships that they face daily. Therefore, having these women as role models is likely the reason why Amina will grow up to be as wonderful as the women she is surrounded by.

Mellah1

This event was created to celebrate the culmination of a women’s workshop, which aimed to identify and create solutions for salient issues that the women in the Mellah face everyday. What started last Ramadan as a participatory initiative to increase women’s agency in their communities evolved into a program that allowed women to communicate and implement the initiatives they most want in their lives. By hosting these last year workshops at a synagogue in the Mellah, many women were exposed to Moroccan cultures and religions they previously knew little about. In addition to increasing religious understanding, the workshops helped the women of the Mellah to convey and express some of the most pressing issues they face on a daily basis. Based on the conversations our communication facilitators had with the women of the community, there was a widespread lack for employment opportunities for women living in the Mellah. Some of the infrastructural needs of the community targeted improvements regarding the restructuring of homes, waste storage, and most importantly, a space for women to collaborate and address these needs of the community; a women’s cooperative.

Mellah

The participatory approach taken in this project aims to give agency to women and girls like Amina, so that they have the same economic and social opportunities as her male counterparts. This initiative will propel Morocco into the next step of social and economic development, through the empowerment of women, and the soon creation of the first women’s cooperative in the Marrakech Mellah. 

Give to this project.

Join us on facebook

HAF tweets

HafFdtn The High Atlas Foundation (HAF) and Siemens Gamesa Renewable Energy (SGRE) have been partnering since July 2018 to… https://t.co/j93PRIMpKo
9mreplyretweetfavorite
HafFdtn The students and some women expressed the importance of preserving the #environment through participation in the dr… https://t.co/fvw7T7pu28
16hreplyretweetfavorite
HafFdtn The High Atlas Foundation proves that meaningful community engagement through participatory methods is essential to… https://t.co/X5dSbyDXFj
19hreplyretweetfavorite
HafFdtn “Please remember to be an ambassador of the environmental campaign. Share the knowledge with your fellow friends to… https://t.co/AuvGUMwg7w
20hreplyretweetfavorite
HafFdtn HAF's Fulfilling Moroccan Development Visions reception, "Was very inspiring. It brought together different culture… https://t.co/AAtHCpSx43
23hreplyretweetfavorite
HafFdtn The ongoing deterioration of landscapes and the significant dependency of rural poor on natural resources illustrat… https://t.co/dHltAKaFnR
HafFdtn Identifying a set of effective practices and sharing lessons learned is therefore crucial to successfully conserve… https://t.co/daq5UT8ynQ

HAF in Morocco

High Atlas Foundation
4 Rue Qadi AyaadAl Manar 4A - 3rd floor - Appt. 12 El Harti, Guéliz, MARRAKESH 40.000 - Morocco

Tel: +212 (0)5 24 42 08 21
Fax+212 (0)5 24 43 00 02 

E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Directions to HAF Marrakech Office

HAF in US

High Atlas Foundation
High Atlas Foundation 511 Sixth Avenue, #K110, NEW YORK, NY 10011
USA

Phone: +1 (646) 688-2946
Fax: +1 (646) 786-4780

E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Follow us

Photos

showshowshowshowshowshowshowshowshowshowshowshow