The National Institute for Solidarity with Women in Distress (INSAF) has provided aid to vulnerable individuals and families in Morocco in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic.

INSAF fights against the social exclusion of single mothers and protects abandoned children, striving for a society that guarantees rights for every woman and child in a dignified environment. Since extra-marital sex is illegal in Morocco, many babies get abandoned or left to die at birth.

The organisation said it noticed that the pandemic was disrupting the daily lives of single mothers, low-income families, refugees, and other vulnerable people in society as they were struggling to survive without daily earnings as a result of lockdown.

‘When the epidemic struck, we practically switched jobs. We’ve devoted ourselves to fighting socio-economic deprivation among different groups of people while continuing to support unmarried women. We had to restructure our activities. We had to act urgently’, the founder of the organisation, Meriem Othmani, said.

It was learnt that after the first distress calls came in two weeks after the announcement of the health emergency, INSAF began to initiate solidarity campaigns and mobilise food donations for the most vulnerable people in the country.

They used the parking lot of the association’s headquarters as a logistical platform for stocking and loading packages containing basic food necessities such as semolina, lentils, pasta, rice, oil, sugar, tea, and soap.

Othmani also noted that volunteers had distributed 500 parcels of 25kg to needy families in Casablanca, and dispatched at least 4,000 to isolated villages in the provinces of Haouz and Chichaoua. Along with food emergency supplies, flyers with hygiene and social distancing guidelines to reduce the spread of Covid-19 have been handed out among the targeted communities.

The INSAF founder also said that the ambitious initiative would help to protect a total of 8,500 sub-Saharan migrants from Covid-19. ‘It’s the first mass-scale operation that has been conceived for migrants in Morocco. Even though it may seem like something impossible, we can make it’, she said.

Despite the lockdown restrictions, INSAF staff are understood to be working seven days a week, more committed than ever to helping the poorest.

Source: The New Arab

Photo source: Feliciano Guimarães

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