HELPING GIRLS DEVELOP
HELPING GIRLS DEVELOP
Thanks to you, we have come a long way since we started in September 2016. Dar Moustaqbel has become a safe haven to girls from the southern Atlas Mountains in Morocco. A place where disadvantaged girls can prosper while pursuing higher education. A rock for those that need it most.
Dar Moustaqbel, literally ‘The House of the Future’, serves girls the building blocks they need for a successful integration in the workforce. Due to the failures of state schools, the girls often lack basic knowledge they need for a successful entry in higher education. Dar Moustaqbel does its utmost best to help the girls catch up. Education, discipline and personal development have been and will remain at the center of attention.
After a trial year spent with ten girls in an apartment while our riad was being renovated, we finally moved into our house in the medina of Marrakech with 26 girls in September 2017. Next year we plan accommodating 55 girls, our maximum capacity.
It is Dar Moustaqbel’s modest contribution in a country with a failed education system. This year a total of 288 hours of French lessons have been taught in-house, not to mention 96 hours of English. All in our study hall, that has been kept busy six evenings a week.
Apart from language classes, the girls were provided with tutors teaching subjects as statistics and bookkeeping. Our activities program features a computer skills course, yoga, cycling, encounters with ground-breaking scientists and inspiring mentors, and a program on entrepreneurship of opportunities.
Our house rules reflect the importance of rigor and good habits. The use of mobile phones, for example, is restricted. We have found that this is the best basis for our students. We ask a lot from them, because we believe in their capacities.
The female students live in Dar Moustaqbel under the supervision of two house sisters, who help, encourage and support the girls wherever they may need it. The two house sisters are responsible for the day-to-day support of the female students living at Dar Moustaqbel. They enforce the house regulations that are reasonably strict in order to help the girls concentrate on their studies. The students take turns cooking, cleaning and washing for all, in order to create responsibility and train practical skills.
Living here enables young disadvantaged girls to fully focus on their studies. Instead of the village life of marriage and motherhood, they choose to use their talents to study, graduate and get a good job. Marriage and motherhood will come later. This way they can build another future for themselves and their families.
WHO & WHY
Dar Moustaqbel has been set up by Hanneke Ouwehand-Van Hooff. Before embarking on this adventure, she worked as a volunteer at three different boarding houses for highschool girls (EFAM), in the High Atlas Mountains.
In rural Morocco, where schools are few and far between, it is the girls who generally have to stay at home, while the boys in the family attend school. Several boarding houses for highschool girls are located in mountain villages near regional schools, so the girls can go to school every day. Many of these girls dream of pursuing higher education, but they lack the financial capacity and in their mountain culture girls are suppose to marry young and become mothers.
During her volonteer work with these young girls Hanneke realised the necessity to help these girls make the next step. She set up a house for student girls called, Dar Moustaqbel, in the University city of Marrakech . This boarding house has been designed to fit the needs of eager and financially disadvantaged female students from remote villages.