“When I first arrived in Morocco over ten years ago, I was fascinated to find the remote communities of the High Atlas Mountains still living as they had done for hundreds of years – girls finishing school at the age of 13 with little scope for a future outside of marriage, if it came their way.
With no scholastic achievements of my own, it dawned on me that I could in fact teach skills and creativity as I had learnt myself, from which they could perhaps find a livelihood – and in turn, the deep satisfaction that comes from having an occupation to enjoy and feel proud of. It’s quite wonderful to come across an opportunity to help others.
I jumped at the challenge and now all these years on, our model continues to grow and the skills and self-sufficiency that we have been teaching in the region for the past decade will be passed on for generations – a lasting legacy.
Most recently, our wonderful trainees at the Tansghart Woodwork Centre in Asni spent a week creating a striking wooden duck as part of a charming competition being run by the teams at Virgin Management and Virgin Limited Edition. It’s a wonderful creation made from reclaimed wood from felled trees sources from the river valley between Tansghart and Kasbah Tamadot.
Guests visiting our projects will be invited to engrave their name and country on our wooden duck as a mark of support. We are always so grateful for the generosity of guests without whom we couldn’t grow and develop our craft centres here in the Atlas Mountains.
Now while some of you may have come across pictures of these little Virgin rubber ducks gallivanting around the world on social media, I’ll let Richard explain further– it’s a jolly fun competition.
Congratulations to our wonderful trainees – you make me so very proud – and happy flying to all the other Virgin Limited Edition ducks as they continue in their travels… something tells me that at 45cm wide, 125cm long and 95cm high, our wooden duck will be staying grounded!
Words by Eve Branson