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Let me quickly tell you a few words about myself. My name is Karim, I am Lebanese with a German mother. During civil war in Beirut in the 70’s, we became refugees in Syria but quickly my parents decided to move to Switzerland for our school. Luckily, in those years, it was easier to immigrate as our passport had a suitable green colour 😊
In the late 80’s, as a young adult, I was back-packing in Morocco to reconnect with my Arab roots. I fell in love with this beautiful country. With my first savings, I acquired this empty piece of land in the Ourika valley (30 km from Marrakesh). For many years, the land was only planted with olive trees and I used to come over for family vacations only. In 2015, the Arab Spring made me close my environmental NGO in Switzerland as we were mainly working in Arab countries (war and unrest have put environment at the second level).
After several years of hard work, I founded a yoga center with a beautiful yoga shala and 3 earth built houses to accommodate guests coming for retreats. We mainly welcome yoga groups, but also flamenco, calligraphy, chanting and musical activities, etc. We try to stick with the ‘earth to table’ concept by growing our own organic produce (as much as possible). We are aiming to provide our guests and clients a unique experience close to nature.
Besides this, my passion for traditional building and handicraft pushed me to create a small eco-building company to revive the mud brick technics and all traditional handicraft work. With the help of skilled workers and handicrafts from the valley, our first project was to build the earth houses of the yoga centre. We developed our own press to create the bricks and are now able to master all building steps from A to Z.
With the eco project, my aim is to bring an alternative to modern material and to minimise cement and iron usage by replacing them, when possible, with more natural and more environmentally friendly material and technics. Quality and trust are our moto.
Finally, we feel a responsibility for the families and village where we are active. I have developed a partnership with the local NGO to promote education for kids (scholarships, tutoring, participatory workshops) and better health for the villagers (women and men).
Small is beautiful. I believe in small but steady steps. My projects rely on ‘word of mouth’ rather than aggressive commercial and marketing campaigns. Similarly, the support to local community is a long-term process guided by the concepts of local capacity building, ethics, governance and leadership enhancement.
Note: Sorry for this long introduction, but I felt it is important to explain all the background so as to call upon suitable skills and competences among you, workawayers.
Help with Eco Projects
Creating/ Cooking family meals
Help around the house
Help with Computers/ Internet
During their stay, workawayers can attend my (nearly daily) yoga sessions. They will also learn about local cultures and customs in a Berber village with deep Arabic influences.
The place is unique because it is offering a peaceful setting in a friendly and family atmosphere, all of our staff coming from the same village.
As we have our own staff for day-to-day tasks (garden, cooking, cleaning, building, etc.), I am more looking for enthusiastic and nicely intentioned workawayers with specific skills and competences:
- Art, photography, videography, marketing and public relations to better promote and put forward the yoga center
- Technical or engineering skills for the eco project to promote, develop and improve traditional building
- Pedagogy or health competences to initiate small actions within our village
Sharing same values and respect for nature & people, commitment and passion are also very important to me.
If you feel you have a real value-added to my projects, please write to me a short presentation of yourself and we can then have a video chat to better to know each other before discussing details of your workaway with us.
Workawayers will have their accommodation and meals in the yoga centre.
The surrounding countryside provides a backdrop for beautiful walks. A pool is available on site. Hiking in the Atlas mountains and visiting Marrakesh and its souks.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
More than two
Approx. 6 hours a day, 5 days a week
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