Where I’ll be living and working

By August 18, 2008 Insights

Last week I finally found out exactly where I’ll be living and working for the next three months. Maybe it’s hormones or the reality that this is all really happening, but I welled up in tears (and it takes a lot to get me to cry).

As I had hoped, I’ll be living in the medina in Rabat, which is the old part of the city (Rabat is the capital of Morocco). Here is a  YouTube video that will give a sense – lots of shops and narrow streets. I’ll be living with a young family – Mr. and Mrs. Lahnikate and their 19 month old son, Akram. The house is described as very clean and “quite big inside” though I have no idea what that means – in any case I’m sure it will be much bigger than my SF cottage!
I’ll be working at the Association Marocaine d’Aide aux Enfants en Situation PR (I have no idea what PR stands for). Rather than summarize the info I received, I’m posting it all below. 
I was looking for a change… clearly I found it.
This association was founded in the late 80’s and has since been working hard to re-direct the lives of children away from drugs and towards education. Most of the children are between the ages of 6 and 16 and have either left school or have never been. The volunteers work with them in basic classerooms. The daily classroom programme is from 9am until 5.30pm and is under the supervision of the coordinator with the help of a Moroccan team of instructors. If you can bring any materials from home such as paper, colouring books, crayons or games for example, it would be greatly appreciated and very useful throughout your placement.
The association is in an area called Hay Nbyat in Sale (north-east Rabat). This is one of the less privileged areas of Sale, however it lies next door to one of the richest areas, Hay Salam.
Volunteers usually take a shared taxi or a bus to work from just outside the Medina where most volunteers live. The taxi costs just 4 DHS each way, approximately 25 pence or 0.5US$ (please note that transport costs during your placement are not paid for by Projects Abroad).
No. of people cared for 120
Age Range in institution 6 to 16
Age range cared for 6 to 16
Av. Group Size 12-15
Hours of work/day 08:30 to 17:
No. of staff 6
Type of institution Day care centre
Other type AMESIP has got seven centres bet
On our care placements it is important that you show the initiative and enthusiasm to immerse yourself into the job and spend your time productively. Your role is essentially as an extra pair of hands, and where children are involved, the more help available the better! As well as helping with the day-to-day running of the centre you will also have the freedom to come up with games and activities to keep the children amused and occupied. We recommend that you come prepared with ideas and materials. You could even teach some basic English, maths, music and drama. if you feel this would be useful to the children. Art, music, drama and sport are always popular!
Typical Day:
You will normally arrive at work by about 9am. Throughout the morning you will work on a range of different activities with small or large groups or sometimes it is beneficial to spend time working one-on-one. The ability of the young children and teenagers differs, but in general they have great attention spans and they are very keen on learning new structures and methods, so varying the activities you do with them is a good idea.
Project Structure:
You should arrive at work before 9.30am. You can structure the morning as you feel is best, but you could include a range of different activities such as singing songs, playing dominoes or doing arts and crafts. You could work with small groups or spend time working one-on-one. The abilities of the young adults/children differ, but in general they have short attention spans, so varying the activities you do with them is a good idea.
We recommend that you bring some materials with you to help with daily activities. You may want to bring games, toys, art materials or even sports equipment.
Other Activities:
Volunteers can sometimes take the children on a trip away from the centre. This may be simply taking someone for a short walk, or a more organised day trip out with several staff as well. Please speak to your supervisor and the Projects Abroad staff to arrange these activities.