UPLIFTING AT-RISK YOUTH AND MARGINALIZED FAMILIES THROUGH ORGANIC AGRICULTURE
The High Atlas Foundation creates unique project models that are essential for Morocco to achieve prosperity. These models, however, require implementation, sustainability, and expanding to the national scale.
Morocco needs a billion fruit trees as one of a number of measures that are needed to overcome rural poverty. The country is also struggling with very concerning levels of youth disenfranchisement. Here is one model solution for both of these serious challenges: Grow organic fruit tree nurseries with the teenage youth who are detained (for minor crimes) at the nation’s Children Protection Centers.
Skills developed while maintaining nurseries are highly employable. We will also experientially build youth’s abilities to monitor carbon offsets, secure organic certification, and manage the organic processing of the product. This model can be launched immediately in the city of Fes and in the northwestern city of Oujda, a place that has double the national average of unemployment.
Here is another essential part of this pilot: we will plant endemic varieties of fruit trees that are on their way to being lost in this region, such as apple, fig, grape, pair, and plum. The fact that farmers do not currently grow these Moroccan species necessitates their constant utilization of pesticides.
This needed initiative in Oujda and Fes gives hope for marginalized and wonderful youth, who desperately want this chance to advance themselves. This project will generate millions of trees in several years to help alleviate the poverty of thousands of rural families, while at the same time help flourish the nation’s biodiversity.
So, what are we waiting for? A pledge, many pledges, everyone’s gift so that we can now implement this model for the Kingdom of Morocco.