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Sophomore serves Morocco earthquake victims

Sophomore+Fife+Famurewa+%28right%29+hands+out+care+packages+in+the+village+of+Ourika%2C+which+was+affected+by+the+earthquake+in+Morocco.
Fife Famurewa
Sophomore Fife Famurewa (right) hands out care packages in the village of Ourika, which was affected by the earthquake in Morocco.

It’s uncommon for many teenagers to choose to spend their school break serving a country struck by disaster, but sophomore Fife Famurewa did.

A high-magnitude earthquake struck the villages surrounding the city of Marrakesh, Morocco, on Sep. 8, and the disaster destroyed many homes and killed over 2,900 people. 

While Famurewa was looking for a current event to write about in her AP World History class, she chose to research the natural disaster that hit the destination her family was planning on traveling to for a birthday party. 

“This motivated me to use this opportunity to support and help the affected families,” Famurewa said.

With very little time, Famurewa prepared care packages with necessary daily items to give to affected families in the villages surrounding Marrakesh. She arrived in Morocco with suitcases full of daily essentials. 

Before going to her family’s final destination, Famurewa toured all around the country. 

“We were guided through the Ourika Valley in the Atlas Mountains,” Famurewa said, “The landscape was beautiful, and the sound of the river followed through the luscious valley.

While they traveled around different villages, they occasionally journeyed into stores. Each store welcomed them with traditional Moroccan green and mint tea.

“This aspect of Moroccan tradition was my favorite part,” Famurewa said. “It introduced me to a culture with such great hospitality.”

After their scenic tour, Famurewa reached the village of Ourika outside Marrakesh, where the devastation was at its worst. 

“While driving through the windy, high-altitude dirt roads, we saw abandoned homes with cracks through their walls,” Famurewa said.

In between the broken-down houses stood small yellow tents. Inside each tent housed makeshift beds with various patterned blankets and household items spread around.

“The yellow tents are where many families were forced to live now that their homes were uninhabitable,” Famurewa said.

Driving through the village, the family could hear playful screaming from children running and chasing each other upon returning from school and coming back home. 

“We saw mothers returning from work carrying baskets over their heads, while some stayed home, caring for their babies,” Famurewa said.

With the help of a local bilingual woman, who worked for an organization that helps widowed women, Famurewa was able to give out her care packages. As she gave out the small gift bags, she said the faces of the young boys and girls turned joyful. The children responded to Fife’s family with “shukran,” or “thank you,” in Arabic.

“Their reactions forever warm my heart as the most enlightening part of my trip,” Famurewa said.

After landing back in Houston, Famurewa recounted many stories about her experiences with the Moroccan people and culture to her peers and teachers at Kinkaid. 

“Having the opportunity to give to these communities after the earthquake was an extremely rewarding experience,” she said.

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About the Contributor
Emerson Heath, Enterprise Editor
Emerson Heath serves as an Enterprise Editor for The Falcon. This is her second year on staff. She is a co-chair of the events and donations committee, a member of Young Alumni Leaders, and an admissions ambassador. She loves playing sports and hanging out with her friends and her dogs. She is excited to spend this year with her ear to the ground, digging up interesting enterprise stories.

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    Paula GriffinOct 17, 2023 at 1:53 pm

    Famurewa, What a beautiful journey you made to help others with your family . The world surely will use / need your loving gifts in the future for humanity. Reading about the out look you had for Morocco bought tears to my eyes. You have so MUCH LOVE in your heart . Your foot prints will be remembered forever on this planet . Keep up the amazing heartfelt work Famurewa . Never give up in anything you do . Thank you Famurewa .

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