ON OUR WAY TO PLANTING ONE MILLION TREES

On a recent trip to the Imenane Valley, I was struck once again by the contrasting beauty of the snow capped mountains and the harsh realities of living in remote, rural Morocco. Far from major cities, secondary schools, and modern medical facilities, communities in rural Morocco depend on traditional agricultural practices to sustain themselves. I spoke with community members in a village where HAF supported tree planting projects in 2006 and 2007, and listened to their stories of gratitude and hopes for the future. In the words of one community member:

“All the trees from the projects of the past two years were a great success. But we still need more cherry trees because there are a lot of empty terraces. Fruit trees help our families because we can eventually harvest the fruit and sell it at the souk (local market). We can use the money from the sale of fruit to feed our families, and buy warm clothes and books for our children to go to school. Our main source of income is from fruit trees—this is our way of life.”
Brahim Disaine, Imenane Valley, Morocco

When you invest in the High Atlas Foundation you are investing in people like Brahim and his family, you are giving them the opportunity to break free from the cycle of poverty. A gift of $50 will help purchase 30 trees for a family like Brahim’s and will help ensure a better future for his children. Please make a gift today to support HAF’s work with villages in the Imenane Valley and throughout Morocco.

As a result of the generosity of donors like you, in 2007 we planted alongside our partners 80,500 fruit trees and saplings, benefiting approximately 15,000 rural Moroccans. The planting of fruit trees has deep and enduring benefits, including doubling household incomes through the sale of fruit (in five years when the trees reach full maturity), improving the local environment, and transferring important technical skills in fruit tree agriculture.

Looking ahead to 2008 HAF’s goal is to at least double the number of trees we planted last year, helping us towards our target of one million trees, as well as support projects in potable water, irrigation, and the construction of women’s cooperatives—all projects that have been determined by the communities we work with. We are building partnerships and meeting with rural communities, we are bringing people together to accomplish great things for Morocco. We hope that you also believe in accomplishing great things for Morocco and will join us by making a gift so that we can continue to support the community development needs of families like Brahim’s.

On behalf of HAF’s Board of Directors and the communities we partner with, thank you for your support. As always I am more than happy to answer any questions you may have and look forward to being in touch again soon.

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