Updated: Jul 12
By Zineb Laadam HAF Field Officer
September 2021—The High Atlas Foundation (HAF) team members met with the TIGMMI cooperative members in Tissfan municipality (Taroudant province) to identify their needs and challenges.
The TIGMMI cooperative was created in Tigmmi n’Targa village in 2007 by 17 women and 24 men, and was supported by the local Targa association for the development and the protection of the environment. The main objective of the cooperative is to promote the agricultural products of their region.
The cooperative has worked on various agricultural activities, such as planting 50 hectares of cactus and more than 1,500 of olives as well as training farmers. The members have a nursery for the distribution of seed and production of seedlings. They have also benefited from the support of the National Initiative for Human Development (INDH) and the rural municipality to promote the cactus products and provide the necessary production equipment.
This cooperative still works under the Targa association, which is why the women are interested in building courage to develop and manage the cooperative’s processes themselves in order to take responsibility for their actions.
Currently, the women are preparing to produce argan, carob, olive, and medicinal plants.
They have the patience, experience, and potential for much innovation.
The highest priorities of the cooperative are determination of the nursery’s needs and training on technical operations to produce high plant quality, but the greatest challenge they face is adequate water supply.
HAF is looking forward to accompanying these women in the accomplishment of their goals to improve their own lives and the lives of their fellow community members by capacity building opportunities via the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) Farmer-to-Farmer (F2F) Program.
Women of TIGMMI Cooperative meet with the HAF team to identify needs and goals—Sept 2021 (Photo: Zineb Laadam)
The HAF team also began another wonderful IMAGINE workshop with twenty-three women of the TIGMMI cooperative, held over two days (25-26 September) in the Tigmmi n’Targa village (Tissfan municipality, Taroudant province).
These women are working to promote agricultural products in their area, but it became clear that they do not hold themselves with the highest value. Women’s greatest resources are themselves—their personal capacities, including their self-image. To be empowered, women must learn to respect themselves and to regard themselves as capable. In practical terms, this challenge can be overcome by raising their awareness, organizing, educating, and training.
In this regard, the HAF process entails building up the women’ s arsenal of resources: physical, economic, social and psychological. This IMAGINE workshop gives the women of the TIGMMI cooperative the means to avail themselves of vital resources and services. It can also give them the capacity to empower themselves, even if only psychologically.
Empowerment is usually not instantaneous but rather transpires over time. As the women of Tigmmi n’Targa village are empowered to work in cooperation, they will move from silence to articulation, from invisibility to recognition, and from isolation to organization.
“This workshop means building aspirations, hopes and expectations,” explains Ezzahra El Yousfi, one of the cooperative’s members.
The IMAGINE workshop leader’s skill, professionalism, preparation, intelligence, time management, and great humour were key to its resounding success. Looking forward, we are extremely enthusiastic about the benefits this new focus will ensure in Taroudant: greater collaboration with HAF and capacity-building opportunities through the F2F program that will improve women’s quality of life. Empowerment keeps the women going!
TIGMMI cooperative members identify goals in IMAGINE workshop—Sept. 2021 (Photos: Zineb Laadam)