In the summer of 2014, I decided to do another trek with Trekking for Kids (TFK) with whom I have trekked in Romania in 2012 and climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro in 2013. When I learned TFK was going to go to the Camino de Santiago, something I’ve wanted to do since I learned about it, I knew I just had to go as it was the perfect combination of a trek and of service to improve the lives of children, something I am very passionate about. The group of trekkers paid their own way and then raised funds for projects to be done at the center selected by TFK.
The service work was going to take place at a center for street and at-risk children in Essaouira on the Atlantic coast of Morocco – a town that surprised me and of which I am writing separately. TFK decided to work with the Bayti Centre to improve the facilities where they work with the children to protect them against violence, to provide psychosocial rehabilitation, to reintegrate families, and other related activities.
TFK selected a number of improvement projects like helping the exterior of the building be repaired and painted. Another project was a kitchen renovation that facilitated the two kitchen staff to be able to work side by side in the small kitchen with two sinks, a new fridge, and a new stove as well as more shelving to better use the space. New equipment for instruction (like a flat screen TV) and other items for the children were donated as well. In summary, a series of projects that would enhance the facilities to create a better environment for Bayti to deliver its services and attend to the children of the streets of Essaouira.
Along with the works, we also got to take the children on outings and threw a party where we all got to enjoy food, games, and music much to the delight of the children.
A final word is to thank the amazing staff and volunteers who are the ones who truly made the world a better place for these children. Je vous remercie, mes amis!
I look forward to another TFK trek in 2015!