I had been patiently waiting for this break, planning for it for two months now, when my friends ask me where I’m going to spend the two weeks break they start laughing when I say that I’m going back to AKKA, that hellish village in the south where they know I spent some really bad times last year. and where there isn’t much to see or do. but for me that place is more than that it’s the place where my amazing friend lives, she is a volunteer there.
We planned to start a GLOW Club last year in the village, where we would do activities once a week. we had our first meeting with the girls back in June we promised that we will have more meetings by the start of the new school year, but since I moved to another village we weren’t able to have the club, and I felt really bad that I couldn’t keep my promise. This break felt like the only opportunity I have to do even a little something to compensate for the girls, so instead of a GLOW Club we decided that during this break for three days we are going to have a GLOW Camp.
GLOW stands for Girls Leading Our World, I had never heard about this term before but I really liked the idea of it, a GLOW camp or a GLOW club is a place where girls learn, have fun and share their thoughts, especially that in those villages girls are either in school if they go to one or in their houses cleaning, cooking and watching Turkish TV series.
Our three days GLOW Camp had the objective of Inspiring girls to recommit to their passions, talk about gender norms in Morocco, and feel comfortable enough to learn about their bodies and health. Each day was filled with activities that we tried as much as we can to make fun, first day was about Setting Goals, second day was about Challenging Gender Norms, and the last was about Health.
first we planned that we will have 20 participant in the camp, my friend visited each girl’s house to make sure that they will show up during the days of the camp, but only three were there at time in the morning of the first day, and we had to knock on the girls doors again trying to convince the moms to let their girls participate in the camp, we were glad that in the end we had 15 girls, that I think was the hardest thing we had to face during the camp.
I’m happy that this camp did see the light after all, it wasn’t easy to convince my family to go back to AKKA, they couldn’t see why it was important for me to go there, I felt like suffocating trying to convince them, I hate that they have all this power over my life, me going there at some point lost all its meaning, why would I go there talk to girls about freedom and dreams when I myself at this age still ask permission of my parents to do anything, my every move should be approved. I felt bad during the days of the camp, I couldn’t stop my brain from thinking about this over and over again but I tried to keep a smile on my face and did my best so the girls learn something and enjoy their break because they deserve that.