I am happy to report that we have gone and returned from Morocco.  We were able to bring a suitcase full of clothing, toys and mobiles to the orphanage and spend time with the children.  If you would like to read about our visit you can do so here.  On Dreams and Healing Broken Hearts  

I am not currently accepting physical donations as we do not have another trip lined up yet, however if you would like to help this orphanage you will find information at the end of the post above.  I plan to continue efforts to help the women and children of Marrakech through this project and other women’s empowerment initiatives.  I hope you will stay tuned as I share more in the future.

This Ramadan season I have a very special project that I am working on – Mobiles for Morocco.  My husband and I are (inshAllah) going to Morocco for a short vacation at the end of September.  As many of you know Morocco is a developing country and there is a lot of people in need.  The first time I visited and experienced children begging and mothers with their children on the street day and night my heart broke into a million pieces.  If this was what was seen on the outside, I couldn’t imagine the desperation behind closed doors.

I wrote to Nora from Life in Marrakesh, who I know has such a strong philanthropic heart to ask what would help.  What could I, no what could we do to help?

“There’s a home here for abandoned babies…..”

she wrote.  That was it, I knew that was it.  She then said the babies spend quite a bit of time in their cribs and it would be nice if they had some mobiles to look at.  Even a few that could be rotated around.

These are some of the babies that donations will go to.

It’s so simple friends.  It’s something every American parent considers a “must have” with a little one on the way.  A recent story from the Voice of America pointed out that 6,000 babies are abandoned in Morocco every year – that’s 1 out of every 50 births.  The reasons for this are varied and are for another time.  The fact remains there are a lot of homes that are doing their best to care for these children.

Here’s what I’m asking you to consider;

They do not have to be these specific mobiles – I simply am sharing links to give some idea of what would work well.  Mobiles do not have to be new but should be in good condition, from non-smoking homes, and clean (please!).
Some other items that would be helpful;
  • clothes for girls and boys sized NB-24 months
  • baby pajamas with feet and snaps (not zippers) in cotton and heavier fabric (like terry cloth)
  • soft toys, if they have lights or play a little song – even better – something like this.
If you would like to help please send me an email so that we can talk more.

I sincerely appreciate any and all support and interest in this project!

If you are unable to donate items or money but are willing to write about or share this project with your Facebook friends, Twitter followers or write about it on your blog I would sincerely appreciate that also.  Please feel free to use the button below to post to your site.  I am available to answer any questions you may have!

 



Most of all I’d like to ask for your prayers.  Some of us can give in a variety of different ways but we all can give a few minutes to ask God/Allah (swt) to protect and look over these children, their birth mothers and their caregivers.

 

If you would like to help out this project please send me an email using “Mobiles for Morocco” in the subject line and let me know how you are willing to help.  I will respond to you as soon as possible.  Please note I am not currently accepting physical donations until plans for another visit are made.  

 Read what other bloggers are saying about Mobiles for Morocco:

 En Francais

En ce mois de Ramadan, je travaille sur un projet très spécial : “Mobiles pour le Maroc”: 
Fin Septembre, mon mari et moi allons nous rendre au Maroc (inshallah) pour de courtes vacances. Lors de ma première visite au Maroc, en voyant des enfants et des mères faire l’aumône dans les rues, de jour comme de nuit, j’ai été très touchée.  Pourtant, bien au-delà de cette misère apparente, je n’ose imaginer le désespoir que vivent ces personnes en privé.

J’ai donc écrit à Nora (de “Life in Marrakesh“), dont je connaissais l’esprit philantropique, pour savoir comment moi et d’autres pouvions aider.

“Il existe un foyer pour bébés abandonnés ici…” a-t-elle répondu.

J’ai compris qu’il s’agissait là d’un point sur lequel nous pouvions aider. Elle a expliqué que ces bébés passaient beaucoup de temps dans leurs berceaux et que des mobiles pourraient égayer leur quotidien . Ne serait-ce que quelques uns que l’on pourrait utiliser à tour de rôle pour les bébés.
C’est simples les amis. Il s’agit d’un objet que tout les parents américains considéreraient obligatoire s’ils étaient sur le point d’avoir un enfant. Une récente étude de “Voice of America” montre que 6000 bébés sont abandonnés chaque année au Maroc : c’est-à-dire qu’1 nouveau-né sur 50 est abandonné. Il ne s’agit pas ici d’approfondir sur les raisons qui poussent les parents à faire cela. Le fait est qu’il existe plusieurs foyers qui font de leur mieux pour prendre soin de ces nouveaux-nés.

Voici ce que je propose : vous pouvez me faire parvenir des mobiles que je centraliserai et ferait parvenir à ces nouveaux-nés au sein de leur foyer à Marrakech. Si possible, un léger , pas les classiques en plastique dur : il me sera ainsi possible d’en transporter un maximum. Voici quelques exemples : 

Il ne s’agit pas ici des marques spécifiques à envoyer, mais simplement  pou vous donner une idée des objets souhaités. Les mobile ne doivent pas nécessairement être neufs. Mais ils doivent être en bonne condition, propres (svp!) et provenir de foyers non-fumeurs .

 

Voici d’autres objets qui pourraient être églement utiles : 
- Vêtements pour filles et garçons correspondant à une taille nouveau-nés et 24 mois.
- Pyjamas pour nouveaux-nés, couvrant les pieds, avec des boutons (pas de fermeture éclair), en coton.
- Jouets légers. L’idéal serait qu’ils disposent de jeux de lumières ou émettent de la musique.

Si vous préférez faire un don financier, cela serait également utile au projet. Nous allons personnellement faire parvenir ces dons. Nous anticipons également le paiement de suppléments liés à l’excès de bagages.

Les dons financiers seront utilisés pour : 
- payer tout objets pour lesquels les dons de
- payer les suppléments liés à l’excès de bagages.
- acheter au Maroc des objets que le foyer estimerait utiles/nécessaires.
- un don financier directement donné aux foyers pour les aider.

Si vous ne pouvez aider en envoyant des objets ou des dons financiers, sachez que nous valorisons toute participation à ce projet : vous pouvez communiquer sur ce projet ou partager cette page auprès de votre réseau social (facebook friends, twitter followers…) ou en parler sur votre blog. N’hésitez pas à utiliser le bouton ci-dessous pour diffuser sur votre site. Et je serais également à votre disposition pour répondre à toutes vos questions!

Plus que tout, j’aimerais vous demander de penser à ces nouveaux-nés lors de vos prières. Chacun d’entre nous peut participer de différentes manières, mais nous pouvons tous demander à Dieu/Allah de protéger et prendre soin de ces enfants, leurs mères biologiques et les personnes qui en prennent actuelement soin.

Si vous souhaitez collaborer, vous pouvez m’envoyer un email (en précisant “Mobiles for Morocco” en objet) pour proposer votre aide. Je vous répondrai le plus vite possible.

La date limite pour les dons physiques est le 1er Septembre 2011 (01/09/2011).

Voici ce que d’autres blogueurs disent du projet “Mobiles for Morocco” :

Merci!!

 

Amanda MouttakiMobiles for Morocco

Comments

  1. Victoria Gaynor

    I love your website! I have traveled to Marrakesh for the first time in May and will go again in the fall, I hope. Thank you!

    1. Author
      Amanda Mouttaki

      Glad to hear that! I hope you’ll be able to come back as well!

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  5. Jamilah Kabbaj

    Salam Mandi,

    After living in Morocco for almost 2 years 1984-1986 you do become somewhat (I hate to say) immune to the begging. Not to say that all are doing this, but some of these “beggers” are very wealthy people who make their living by begging. Even families who have handicapped family members will “pimp” them out to make a buck. I have personally seen it with my own eyes. Please don’t think that I am mean but I guess after almost 28 years it hardens you. As for the babies – most of these babies are abandoned because the these babies are conceived out of wedlock. Believe my, my heart goes out to them all – my sister in law adopted a baby from Morocco (she lives here in the US) and it took over 2 years and several thousands of dollars. Also, it is best never to send money directly to the orphanage, because chances are – very little of it will be spent on the orphanage. My heart goes out to these children and I wish I could take them all. I wish more people would take interest in these poor babies, but until Morocco stands up and does something about it, it will just continue on.

    1. Author
      marocmama

      I agree there are people who take advantage and beg however I always wonder what if? It’s easy to be hardened but I believe it’s about intention and if they’re lying they will have to deal with a tougher critic than me. I also agree that it’s important to know where you’re sending money too. I can assure you the orphanage I worked with is reputable and the money spent wisely.

  6. Carol Mackenzie

    I am a business owner in New Zealand with a business partner and dear friend in Marrakech. We are currently awaiting the arrival, in NZ, of our first container load of goods from Morocco. We are looking for a children’s charity to sponsor through our website. Our hearts beat for the children of Marrakech too….for the orphans and for children entrapped in the sex trade. Please email me. Sorry, I have an aversion to setting up Outlook Express. Insha’allah!

  7. marie

    Happy to hear all went well and you received much support around the idea. I will stay tuned for other projects to come.
    Take care.

  8. Jennifer Bailey Wechsler

    Hi — Paula Wolfort gave me your name and blog site — which I love! I will be taking my kids to Marakech over the December holidays and would love to bring a huge box of mobiles and soft dolls as I have a toy company . Would you have the contact info for the orphanage and is it OK to tour it with my children? I will donate it all in your Mobiles 4 Morocco name. Thanks so much!!

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  13. Dee Dee Woodard

    Mandi you should consider putting up stats so people know how well you are doing with this charity. I couldn’t add to it financially but I passed the world along on my facebook to those who can and want to add to it. That’s my personal addition to this wonderful project until I’m in a better place to do more. Good luck. Love you!

  14. Marie

    Brilliant Idea! I am on it, I will send you a separate e-mail on this.
    I experienced the same feeling when visited Morocco 3 years ago. Thanks for giving us an opportunity to help. Take care and all the best with your project.

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  17. alice

    So how can a person adopt one or two of thes precious babies? I think 2 loving parents to hold and love them is much better than a mobile?

    1. Author
      marocmama

      Alice, of course having a home is better than a mobile however very few orphanages in Morocco allow adoptions outside of the country. The process is long and fairly difficult through the court system. I’d love it if every baby had a home either with their birth parent or adoptive parents, but this is my little way of trying to make their lives a little better.

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  19. Lisa El Qarei

    I love this project and want to try to help. Where can I send these mobile and donations after I collect them?

    1. Author
      marocmama

      Lisa – thank you so much. I will email you more information directly.

  20. Julie Klingberg

    So excited to see this project come to fruition! I will be donating a mobile for you to deliver to these beautiful babies!

  21. setto

    Good luck with your project.
    I hope that the Moroccan custom will not ask you to pay custom’s fees for that.
    I think it is better if you get some paper saying that this stuff is not for commercial purposes and that it has no commercial value or sth like that.
    I am not an expert but as they say it is better safe than sorry.

    1. Author
      marocmama

      Nope that’s a good point and something we had thought of when hashing out this project. We plan to bring info for the authorities just in case. Thank you for your well wishes.

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