Difference between revisions of "Morocco"
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|Peace Corps Welcome Book|
Morocco was among the first countries to invite the Peace Corps to assist in its development and manpower needs. A group of 53 surveyors, English teachers and irrigation foremen first arrived in Morocco in 1963 at the invitation of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
From 1963 to today, more than 3,500 Volunteers have served the Kingdom of Morocco in more sites, sectors, and projects than can be accurately reported, but which have included such endeavors as lab technology, urban development, commercial development, education of the blind and deaf, rural water supply, small business development, beekeeping, and English training. Currently, Volunteers serve in the following sectors: Youth Development.
Peace Corps History
Main article: History of the Peace Corps in Morocco
Morocco was among the first countries to invite the Peace Corps to assist in its development process. A group of 53 surveyors, English teachers, and irrigation supervisors arrived in Morocco in 1963 at the invitation of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Since then, more than 4,000 Volunteers have served in the Kingdom of Morocco in areas such as lab technology, urban development, home economics, commercial development, education of the blind and deaf, rural water supply, vocational education, maternal child health, natural resources management, youth development, marine and inland fisheries, small business development, sports, beekeeping, architecture, and English language training.
For a description of the 1962-63 start of Peace Corps in Morocco see History of the start of Peace Corps in Morocco at 
For a listing of Morocco Peace Corps Directors over time see 
Living Conditions and Volunteer Lifestyle
Main article: Living Conditions and Volunteer Lifestyles in Morocco
You will be assigned to your permanent site towards the end of pre-service training. After your site announcement, you will visit your assigned site to meet your counterparts and other members of your community. Once you move to the site, you will spend your first two months living with a host family that has been chosen by the Peace Corps. This family has prepared for your arrival and will provide you with a safe and secure place to live while you continue to learn the language and adapt to the culture. An additional objective of this period is to help you integrate more effectively into the community.
After the mandatory two-month stay with a Moroccan family, you are free to change your housing, in accordance with the Peace Corpsâ safety and security criteria (see the chapter on Health Care and Safety). The Peace Corps will give you a modest settling-in allowance to purchase household necessities such as a stove, dishes, and furniture. Peace Corps will provide additional items, such as a carbon monoxide detector and water filter, if necessary. Volunteers in areas that experience unbearably cold winters can be reimbursed for the purchase of an appropriate heater. Depending on the site, Volunteer housing generally consists of two or more rooms and private bath and latrine facilities. Some Volunteers live in family compounds with one or two private rooms for their use.
Main article: Training in Morocco
The 8-week training program provides you the opportunity to learn new skills and practice them as they apply to Morocco. You will receive training and orientation that integrates components of language, cross-cultural communication, area studies, development issues, health and personal safety, and technical skills pertinent to your specific assignment. Trainees work together as a group and have a chance to experience local culture and customs on their own during a stay with a host family and community-based technical training.
When you arrive in-country, you will spend the first three to five days in Rabat or another major city and then travel to a sector-specific seminar site. While in the initial city, you will be welcomed by the Country Director and receive an overview of Peace Corps in Morocco, be introduced to your program's training staff, receive vaccinations, and participate in introductory sessions on safety and security, cross-culture, and technical aspects of your sector program. Next you will travel overland to your seminar site where you will begin learning one of three Moroccan languages and Arabic script. After the first week, you will leave the seminar site and begin community-based training (CBT). During this phase of training, groups of 5-6 trainees learning the same language will be assigned to continue training in a pre-selected village. At your CBT site, you will live with a host family. Staying with a host family will bring to life some of the topics covered in training, giving you a chance to practice your new language skills and directly observe and participate in Moroccan culture. Throughout the training period you will be spending some time at the seminar "hub" site and the majority of your time at the community-based training. For the final week of training, all trainees will be brought together at a common training site where, upon completion of the final sessions, you will be sworn in as a Volunteer. Tbarkallah!
Health Care and Safety
Main article: Health Care and Safety in Morocco
The Peace Corps' highest priority is maintaining the good health and safety of every Volunteer. Peace Corps medical programs emphasize the preventive, rather than the curative, approach to disease. The Peace Corps in Morocco maintains a health unit with two full-time medical officers, who take care of Volunteers' primary health-care needs. Additional medical services, such as testing and basic treatment, are also available in Morocco at local hospitals. If you become seriously ill, you will be transported either to an appropriate medical facility in the region or to the United States.
Diversity and Cross-Cultural Issues
Main article: Diversity and Cross-Cultural Issues in Morocco
In fulfilling the Peace Corps' mandate to share the face of America with our host countries, we are making special efforts to see that all of America's richness is reflected in the Volunteer corps. More Americans of color are serving in today's Peace Corps than at any time in recent years. Differences in race, ethnic background, age, religion, and sexual orientation are expected and welcomed among our Volunteers. Part of the Peace Corps' mission is to help dispel any notion that Americans are all of one origin or race and to establish that each of us is as thoroughly American as the other despite our many differences.
Our diversity helps us accomplish that goal. In other ways, however, it poses challenges. In Morocco, as in other Peace Corps host countries, Volunteers' behavior, lifestyle, background, and beliefs are judged in a cultural context very different from their own. Certain personal perspectives or characteristics commonly accepted in the United States may be quite uncommon, unacceptable, or even repressed in Morocco.
Outside of Morocco's capital, residents of rural communities have had relatively little direct exposure to other cultures, races, religions, and lifestyles. What people view as typical American behavior or norms may be a misconception, such as the belief that all Americans are rich and have blond hair and blue eyes. The people of Morocco are justly known for their generous hospitality to foreigners; however, members of the community in which you will live may display a range of reactions to cultural differences that you present.
- Possible Issues for Female Volunteers
- Possible Issues for Volunteers of Color
- Possible Issues for Senior Volunteers
- Possible Issues for Married Volunteers
- Possible Religious Issues for Volunteers
- Possible Issues for Volunteers With Disabilities
Frequently Asked Questions
Main article: FAQs about Peace Corps in Morocco
- How much luggage am I allowed to bring to Morocco?
- What is the electric current in Morocco?
- How much money should I bring?
- When can I take vacation and have people visit me?
- Will my belongings be covered by insurance?
- Do I need an international driver's license?
- What should I bring as gifts for Moroccan friends and my host family?
- Where will my site assignment be when I finish training and how isolated will I be?
- How can my family contact me in an emergency?
- Will there be e-mail and Internet access? Should I bring my computer?
Peace Corps News
The following is automatic RSS feed of Peace Corps news for this country.
<rss title=on desc=off>http://news.google.com/news?hl=en&ned=us&scoring=n&q=%22peace+corps%22+%22morocco%22&output=rss%7Ccharset=UTF-8%7Cshort%7Cdate=M d</rss>
PEACE CORPS JOURNALS
( As of Tuesday March 3, 2015 )<rss title=off desc=off>http://peacecorpsjournals.com/rss/mo/blog/50.xml%7Ccharset=UTF-8%7Cshort%7Cmax=10</rss>
Contributions to the Morocco Country Fund will support Volunteer and community projects that will take place in Morocco. These projects include water and sanitation, agricultural development, and youth programs.
- List of resources for Morocco
- Volunteers who served in Morocco
- Friends of Morocco
- Pre-Departure Checklist
- Inspector General Reports