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Volunteers' blog

Tuesday 13 April 2010

Welcome to Dar Tinmel...!!

I’m Karima the volunteer in the second house at Talat N’Yacoub.

Sorry, I’ve been here since November and I haven’t yet written in the blog! (Shame on me!).

I’m a 27year-old Moroccan/French woman; I don’t speak Arabic :( but I do speak berber, so that makes it easier for me to understand the girls here and help them.

I’ve done a lot of things since I’ve been here.

  • I help both houses but most of the time I’m in Talat N’Yacoub because Dar Asni is running very well now.

    The second house opened in September so we had a lot of things to do in the house, a lot of things to organise with the girls and the house mother.

    I also help the girls with their homework; I give them lessons to improve their marks at school (French, maths, English, IT). They began the school year with very poor levels in all their school subjects because the quality of teaching at their primary schools wasn’t enough good. But now, hamdoulilah, they are achieving better marks and they are all motivated to do even better and move up to the next class inchallah!!!

  • In the beginning of the year 2010 we had a new house mother who came to stand in for the other house mother. Her name is Khadija and she’s a 35 year-old Moroccan woman. It’s great to have her with us. She has a lot of skills and ideas which are really useful for the house and the girls.

    In the beginning it was difficult for the girls having a new house mother, changing the rules in the house…But now they understand that Khadija and I really love them and all that we do is for them. We want them to feel at home and we want them to get good marks and open(or expand) their minds. Now the girls are used to their new house, all is well organised, and we do more activities with them.

We had a big party when Khadija arrived, to welcome her and to celebrate some birthdays.

We also chose the house’s name: DAR TINMEL.

Nicola joined us a few weeks ago. The girls love her and are beginning to learn English. She also teaches English to Khadija.

Talat N’Yacoub is situated in the high atlas,one hour away from Asni. There’s a beautiful landscape and we are near Tinmel where there is a famous mosque built in the 12th century.

We went to visit the mosque with the girls. They were really excited, it was a beautiful day and we learned the story of the mosque. We came back at the sunset and the girls were really tired and they slept with a lot of happy memories!

  • Last week end was a big week end for all the girls! We went to Asni to visit Dar Asni and the girls there. And for some girls it was the first time that they had gone beyond Talat N’Yacoub, so it was a big adventure!!!

    We stopped at Ouirgane where there’s a big and beautiful lake and we arrived at Dar Asni on Saturday afternoon. We prepared some “msemen” (Moroccan crèpes) for the girls at Dar Asni and they gave to each girl a hand-mad
    e bracelet. That was really nice. There were 30 girls at Dar Asni, lots of noise and lots of fun !!! We had a big party on Saturday night ! In the beginning all the girls were a little bit shy but finally everybody had fun with lots of games, lots of dancing…!!

    And on Sunday, Damien Durand came to Dar Asni, a french cook well-known all over the world. We had a cooking class with all the girls, the house mothers and the volunteers. And this was the menu: “Salade niçoise”, “Mostelle pomme boulangère” (fish with potatoes) and “tarte fine aux pommes” for the dessert. The French cook brought a new experience for all the girls; they are used to Moroccan cooking! But they liked it and they really enjoyed being taught by a great cook!

    The Dar Tinmel girls left Dar Asni at 5pm and everybody thought that was a good idea for all the girls to meet for the week end!

And all the girls cannot wait for the next meeting...inchallah !!!