After a long wait, the High Atlas Foundation has been able to establish its branch in Boujdour Province. This local branch was a chance for me to have a job I like much! I enjoy the development work in the neglected villages specifically in Boujdour province, which despite its geographical advantages, it suffers from marginalization.
After receiving the provisional agreement to establish the new chapter, I was given the opportunity to work with the High Atlas Foundation, thanks Allah for that. I love its participatory development work. Afterwards, I had the great pleasure to meet Dr Yossef Ben Meir and to work with HAF’s coordinator Mrs Ouafa Elbargui. I learned a lot of positive things which made me feel very honored and at the same time I recognize the big responsibility regarding my mission with HAF in Boujdour.
And I will not forget the meeting with Mr Larbi Didouqen, the Vice President of HAF who enriched my ideas with the information appropriate to the work of the Foundation.
Finally, I got the chance to start working and the first thing I did was accompanying Mrs Ouafa Elbargui, from whom I learned a lot about communication and the participatory approach as the fundamental principles for our work. We conducted community meetings with fishermen of the rural fishing villages of Aftissaft and Elkraa. We were able to learn about their sufferings, their problems and also their dreams. We felt neither hunger nor thirst while meeting those people; because we forget about ourselves when we saw and discovered the misery of the fishermen. After hours of listening to them and moving around their boats and slums where there were no decent living conditions, our destination was to the rural fishing village of Elkraa. Because of the long distance to this village and because of long hours had passed without rest or food, we decided to stop with the taxi driver accompanying us. We stopped for a while at the rest station, which is on the road to Dakhla, where we had lunch. It was a very long distance, and the secondary road leading to Elkraa was very difficult. But we didn’t stop, we continued on our way.
After arriving at our destination, we found only two fishermen in Elkraa beach. We talked with them. They asked us about our identity and continued on their way hoping to return back after leading us to the village. After that, we met two security men working there who helped us to get to the place of the fishermen. They were gathered on a highland, a place which was not accessible by cars; however our goal was to arrive to that point so as to communicate with people. We had forgotten all the difficulties such as the long distances and other challenges; for we love our work. We continued along the road on foot until we arrived at the place to meet the fishermen. Those fishermen were not any luckier than the others in the rural village of Aftissat; they also have their woes and critical living conditions. We were very touched by them and their sufferings.
I am so happy that I am joining the work with HAF because it offers me an opportunity to understand and be open to many people and their sufferings. I would like to thank all the people who offered me this chance especially Dr Yossef Ben Meir and Mrs Ouafa Elbargui, and special thanks to all the people who helped us from far or near to work hard. Good luck