JUNE DEPARTURE ・ HOST FAMILY ・ TEACH ENGLISH AND LIFE SKILLS
Spending a summer overseas in Morocco will open up worlds of exotic and vibrant cities with warm and inviting citizens. Morocco is a country, as the late King Hassan II said, “like a tree whose roots lie in Africa but whose leaves breathe in Europe”. The geography and rich history of this fascinating country allows for exploring its old medinas, spectacular mosques and souks, and seeing the mixture of the original Berber people, along with the Arab and Africans, who together make up this lively Muslim country.
Teaching abroad with WorldTeach Morocco, in partnership with IDMAJ, is a rewarding and life-changing opportunity. Your first week in Morocco is in the country’s largest city, Casablanca. During this week, you jump into life in this fascinating metropolis. Your days are filled with orientation sessions and group excursions, where you explore the history and culture of Morocco. With guest lecturers and sessions led by a local Moroccan, who serves as your Summer Program Coordinator, you are provided with information that helps you transition into teaching and integrate into the culture, as well as Arabic lessons each day and world-famous Moroccan cuisine each night. Orientation week culminates in a dinner at Rick’s Café, a re-creation of the café made famous by the iconic Hollywood film, “Casablanca.” With a bit of Arabic and training for your upcoming teaching, you leave Orientation ready to live and work in one of the major cities of Morocco.
Note: The program runs through the entire month of Ramadan in this Muslim country, although you need not observe the fast, and host families make arrangements for your noon meal.
I found that once I pushed myself to initiate conversations with Moroccans around me, I truly became part of their community and they treated me like part of their family and culture.
As a WorldTeach Morocco Summer Volunteer, you serve in urban settings in Morocco, either along the coast or inland, teaching in community centers that are in the poorer parts of the city and with NGO’s that work with disadvantaged young people. Most of the sites are with high school-aged students or young adults who need help with English and other skills to get jobs. Besides teaching English, many of our sites are also requesting you teach different life skills to their students on topics like personal finance, health, or job readiness.
During Orientation, you are provided with manuals for teaching both English and Life Skills, and these serve you in your lessons over the course of your service. Because French is by far the most widely spoken European language, it is highly recommended that you have at least basic French to participate in this program.
Volunteers will participate in all the extra activities organized by the various centers. Volunteers can also suggest some activities and the run them after getting the OK from the director. Do remember that for much of the summer the students will be fasting for Ramadan, so you will want to factor that into your plans for student activities. Our most successful WorldTeach Morocco volunteers are mindful of the convergence of westernized culture with traditional Islamic customs. Being a conscientious observer and seeking to understand your surroundings will only enhance your experience.
In this program, you have the opportunity to see much of this African country, the only one not a member of the African Union. You can wander the old medinas of the inland cities of Fes and Marrakesh, bargain for wares, eat delectable Moroccan dishes, and watch the lively exchanges. A placard outside a shop in Fes says what most visitors feel, that “Fes is without doubt the greatest medieval Arab city still intact anywhere on earth.” Moving on to the beautiful coastal cities like Rabat and Tangier, you are visiting both the old and the new. In any place, you hear the call to prayer five times daily and are likely to absorb the lovely, “Inshallah” (God willing) into your vocabulary.
Living with a local host family, you have a chance to see the daily life in Morocco. They provide you a furnished room, meals, and the opportunity to join in the activities of the family. Many families have children who want to practice their English with you, just as you might want to practice your Arabic (and maybe your Berber as well!) with them. It is a fascinating but also challenging experience being in Morocco during Ramadan, the Muslim holy month where adherents, the majority of the population, neither eat nor drink during the time that the sun is up. Host families feed you during the day during Ramadan if you wish, and food is available at local stores, but this is a unique opportunity to participate in one of the most interesting experiences in Islam, one of the five pillars of the faith. Breaking the fast at sundown with your Moroccan friends is an experience not to be missed!
We anticipate that you are placed in pairs at host schools for support and safety reasons.
The cost of the Morocco Summer program is $4,990. This covers pre-departure preparation and visa if necessary, supplemental overseas medical and emergency evacuation insurance, one week in-country orientation as well as a Mid-Service and End-of-Service conferences, an Exploration and Reflection excursion lasting up to one week, a small stipend to cover teaching-related expenses, 24-hour field staff support, room and board, and alumni support and networking.
Many volunteers successfully fund raise all or a significant portion of their volunteer commitment. Please refer to our fundraising webpage for more information about fundraising possibilities.
Volunteers in the Morocco Summer program must:
- Be a native-level English speaker
- Basic knowledge of French is encouraged
- Be between the ages of 18 and 74
- Be flexible, open-minded, and patient
- Have a genuine interest in teaching