Volunteers

Charlotte Worth Morocco

What members of staff do you remember the most and why?

Cleaners – Amina and Sayeeda – Extremely friendly, welcoming and helpful and saw them almost everyday.
Abdullah – Visited very regularly, usually daily to take us to projects, check that everything was ok etc.
Fatimzzhara – Really fun and friendly and always made sure everyone was happy and everything was going ok.
All the staff I met were memorable as they were all really friendly and enthusiastic and would always do their best to help out with anything. I don’t have a bad word to say about any of them.

What were your impressions of the accommodation?
The accommodation was really nice and a lot better than I had expected. It was very large, homely, clean, and comfortable and I enjoyed spending time there.

Why did you want to volunteer?
To help and work with disadvantaged children, try something different, try to make a difference to children’s lives.

Do you feel you made a difference, how?
I didn’t feel like the work that I did was crucial, if I wasn’t there, then the children would still be fine but I did feel like I made a difference in terms of improving the day of the children that I worked with – seeing the children smiling and laughing when we were playing and seeing them learn new things made me feel like I was making a difference and that the time was worthwhile. I found the feeding project really rewarding as I actually felt that I was really making a difference by ensuring that the homeless children and adults would have at least one decent meal, and also their reactions showed their appreciation.

What did you do for fun?
Went to the beach – Essaouria
Visited the souks and Djemaa el Fna
Explored Marrakech with other volunteers
Met up with friends who live in Marrakech that I knew from a previous trip

When was your most enjoyable experience, do you have an interesting story?
The scout camp in Casablanca was an amazing, unforgettable and surreal experience – playing in the sea with the orphans, taking part in mock weddings, stage performances every night, cooking a meal for 1000 people, singing and dancing with the kids on the beach, campsite, street, tent…everywhere!
The street kids project in Daoudiate – always such lovely children and amazing, enthusiastic project leaders with fun singing, dancing and chanting activities.

Who did you make friends with and for what reasons?
The other volunteers – we were living and working together everyday and so became very close quite quickly.
Project co-ordinators and staff – they were all so approachable, friendly and really made an effort to get to know everyone

What were the names of the best places to hang out and socialise
Street stalls at night in Djemaa el Fna – great atmosphere and experience. Pizza hut in Gueliz – for a bit of home comfort after a few weeks away. Souks – amazing, unpredictable, fun, exciting

Would you considering going again or perhaps to another project with Original Volunteers?
I would really like to go back to Morocco again, I had a brilliant experience this time and on my previous visit and would like to go back to visit the kids and project staff again and see how things and people have changed. I would also like to try projects in other countries with Original Volunteers.

What would you say/recommend to a friend who was interested in volunteering?
Go for it!!

What items would you suggest future volunteers pack?
Something different and exciting for the kids – each day we seemed to have a lot of the same kinds of activities: colouring books, bead sets, paints etc…they really enjoyed them, but maybe something a bit different?
Not to pack: white clothes!

How much money would you suggest you take per week?
Depends on what trips etc you go on. Could get by easily on less than £50, maybe need a little extra for trips, souvenirs etc.

Could you offer any tips to future volunteers?
If you want to do more than play work, i.e teaching English etc go after mid- September when schools start back, also starts to cool down a little then.