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Rising From the Rubble: Water Mission’s Crisis Response in Morocco

Last September, in the wake of a devastating magnitude 6.8 earthquake, Edriss watched his world crumble. The quake, the most powerful in more than a century, would come to claim thousands of lives while demolishing Edriss’ family home. 

As the dust settled in his village of Aneri, Edriss and his family were forced to move into a temporary shelter for internally displaced people. There, they lacked the basic plumbing and other essential sanitation services they had come to rely on.  

“We were struggling, especially with our children and families at night,” shared Edriss, a father to a young son. 

“You solved the biggest problem.” —Edriss”

Edriss’ struggles mirrored those of nearly all of his neighbors in the Al-Haouz province, where pre-existing water systems remained partially operational but latrines and handwashing areas were no longer available. Without this basic infrastructure, Edriss and his community were stuck, unable to gain a foothold to begin rebuilding their lives. 

What Edriss did not know is that help would be on the way within days of this traumatic event. Upon learning of the earthquake, Water Mission’s Disaster Assistance Response Team began coordinating with local organizations to identify the most urgent safe water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) needs. Thanks to these partnerships and generous friends like you, Water Mission was able to act swiftly. We constructed emergency latrines in the region’s hardest-hit areas. Within seven weeks, Water Mission built nearly 300 latrines and provided local partners with materials for 90 more, ensuring immediate relief for the community. 

Generous friends enabled us to serve 12,000 men, women, and children with latrines and WASH services, giving hope to those who had lost so much.

Alongside latrines, Water Mission installed handwashing stations, addressing a critical element of disease prevention in disaster areas. Volunteers also distributed hygiene kits containing soap, toothbrushes, and other essentials, providing families a semblance of normalcy and routine in the face of unimaginable loss.  

As communities dealt with the fallout of the earthquake, Water Mission adapted its response, combining immediate disaster relief efforts with longer-term solutions aimed at re-establishing water access in Al-Haouz’s most vulnerable communities. These activities included water pipe repairs in the village of Tnirte, new distribution lines in Anerni and Ourmer, and a five-fold increase in water storage capacity in Tifney. 

To date, Water Mission has served more than 12,000 people in 65 communities through WASH services, provided 400 latrines, built 370 handwashing stations, and distributed 1,700 hygiene kits.  

In the process, Water Mission has, in the words of Edriss, “solved the biggest problem” facing those in greatest need. 

Abdel, Nadia, and their six-month-old son, Mohammad, survived the earthquake. Although still struggling to process what happened, they have connected with Water Mission to help other families from neighboring communities.

Without question, Edriss and his neighbors’ journey to recovery will be a long one. But thanks to the generosity of our donors, Water Mission has been able to demonstrate the love of Christ in word and deed for thousands of Moroccans as they walk through their darkest hours.  

Will you come alongside Water Mission to bless people in need following disasters like this one?  

Give Safe Water

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