The education unions of Morocco have started the work towards recovery from the 6,8-magnitude earthquake that left thousands dead or injured, including many teachers and students. The solidarity and generosity shown by EI members organisations across the world in response to the EI solidarity call have been heartily welcomed and allowed local affiliates to step up their actions.
The teacher unions SNE-FDT and the SNE-CDT have joined forces to develop a joint consolidated plan to deliver assistance to teachers and school communities in the provinces that were the most affected: Marrakesh, Al-Haouz, Taroudant and Chichawa. The unions have focused their action on the following areas:
- Offering psychological support to teachers and students,
- Distributing essential school supplies,
- Providing toys for young children, and
- Contributing to the establishment of school libraries.
In the direct aftermath of the earthquake that hit Morocco on September 8th, all EI affiliates in the country had stepped in to support the victims, calling for their members to make blood donations and assessing the needs of their members and the communities in the affected regions.
Impact on the education system and communities
The natural disaster killed more than 2,900 people and caused severe injuries to 5,600 people more, including many teachers, students, and their communities. According to the Ministry of Education, more than 1000 schools were partially or totally destroyed, jeopardising the schooling of 60.000 children, especially girls.
The epicentre of the earthquake was in a remote area of the High Atlas Mountains in the Al-Haouz province, 75 km south-west of Marrakesh.
In response to this tragedy, EI reacted swiftly to express the solidarity and support of the global teaching community with our sister organisations in Morocco. The global union federation extended an emergency relief donation and launched an urgent call for solidarity, mobilizing its affiliates worldwide to contribute to the earmarked EI Solidarity Fund, to help Moroccan unions address teacher unionists’ pressing needs in the earthquake-affected communities.
EI and its Moroccan affiliates are deeply grateful for the solidarity shown and the contributions received from education unions worldwide.