At Amis Des Écoles, our goal is to develop sustainable solutions for the communities and villages that we work in. This means that we do not enter one village, renovate one school, and then move on, but we commit to many year long-term educational and economic development projects in a few select regions. This way we build trust and develop buy-in with the community so that they know that we are serious about creating lasting positive change.
In addition, we also aim to develop new cost effective prototypes that we can duplicate in multiple villages. One of our most exciting new projects is in partnership with the Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (or for those of us who don’t speak German, the “GIZ”). The “GIZ ” is a German international development corporation that implements technical projects. Their mission is to plan, fund and execute economic development projects that focus on social inclusion and environmental protection. What a perfect partnership!
Amis Des Ecoles is now officially working with the “GIZ” and Eva Klewno, our partner architect, to renovate one school in Tata and two preschools in Midelt. Our main goal is to develop a comfortable learning space for students during the winter and the summer. As with many rural regions in Morocco, Tata and Midelt struggle with subzero temperatures in the winter and stifling heat in the summer (Over 50 Celsius!). With the help of Klewno Architecture, we will refit these learning spaces with high-tech insulation and add economically viable heating and cooling solutions (like water boilers and ceiling fans) ultimately creating a comfortable climate in these classrooms so that the children can focus on learning.
We are beginning with a school in the Tata region. This model will become our prototype for future school renovations. We not only be working on the insulation and acclimatization of the classrooms but we will also completely renovate two classrooms, one library, build sanitary facilities and a clean drinking water fountain. A new playground will be added and a wall surrounding the campus area will be built to keep the school and the children protected from vandalism and from wild animals (a real concern in these areas!) Finally, a garden will be planted in which the students will be ask to steward.
Experience and research have shown numerous benefits of school gardens and natural landscaping.
- Students learn focus and patience, cooperation, teamwork and social skills.
- They gain self-confidence and a sense of “capableness” along with new skills and knowledge in food growing – vital for these rural regions.
- Garden-based teaching addresses different learning styles and intelligences.
- Achievement scores improve because learning is more relevant and hands-on.
- Students become more fit and healthy as they spend more time active in the outdoors and start learning about health and nutrition.
- The schoolyard is diversified and beautified.
- Graffiti and vandalism decrease because students respect what they feel some ownership in.
Overall, sustainable projects and strategic partnerships like the one we have developed with Eva Klewno and The “GIZ” will allow Amis Des Écoles to create lasting positive change and economic growth in the rural regions of Morocco.
Questions? Want to get involved? Email us at email@example.com