Updated: Jul 11
By Fatima El Mrini
HAF Monitoring Officer (YCC)
Planting trees in Sidi Bennour with Fatima El Mrini, HAF Tree Monitoring Officer and driver Mohamed bin Yassin
Last month, the High Atlas Foundation (HAF) monitoring team visited Sidi Bennour province (Casablanca-Settat region) on the annual tree-planting day in coordination with Al-Bar and Al-Ihsan Association for Development and Social Services. The team decided to plant trees in this area that day because of the participants’ great desire and hard work. The students of Al-Jurf Al-Asfar High School also learned about HAF and the importance of planting trees to preserve the environment. The whole group planted trees together, learning the correct planting method. It was found that their water has a high content level of salt, but other than that, they work hard and want more trees in the future. They also really want a nursery in their area to manage so that they can take greater advantage of the opportunity to grow fruit trees. Having inspected the trees that were distributed, it is clear that they have been well planted.
The following month, HAF visited Sidi Bennour a second time and coordinated with the Association of Albir Wa Alihsan for Social Services in Chohouba village, Sania Brickik community for a successful activity with farmers. During this visit, the HAF team oversaw the distribution of 17,000 fruit tree seedlings (It would have been 20,000 but for the increased costs of transportation that have arisen because of COVID19), for a total of 29,390 trees distributed in this area in 2021. The remaining quantity and more will be completed during the fifth batch between olives, pomegranates, figs and almonds.
In partnership with HAF, the Awlad Bu Hamid multi-service association will hold a workshop every month in order to track the successful establishment of 10 cooperatives and the identification of supervisors in order to create more than 260 direct and 10,000 indirect job opportunities. A number of shareholders who wished to participate in the establishment of cooperatives have registered for these workshops.
HAF conducted a training workshop on the importance of establishing cooperatives and organizing work to advance the region and provide job opportunities. HAF team members met with the village’s 50 farmers, the cooperative and association members, and the President of Sabt Sais community, Mr. Mohamed Satea. The residents are very enthusiastic about plans that contribute to reforestation as effective responses to the current severe drought, livestock decrease, and water salinity. In addition to water, the population needs solar energy.
The projects selected to be worked on and put into practice are as follows:
Build a nursery for the province from their contribution of 1.5 hectares, labor, and money
Establish cooperatives with equal numbers of men and women for cactus and bee products, livestock farming, water purification, an olive press and more.
The region’s residents demonstrated a great desire for trainers to train them in the success of these ideas and in how these projects can advance the region and intensify efforts for a better environment.