As of April 28, the Ministry of Solidarity helped accommodate 6,324 homeless people and assisted 2,060 others in reuniting with their families.
Rabat – The Moroccan Minister of Solidarity, Social Development and Family, Jamila El Moussali, announced yesterday that Morocco conducted the largest shelter operation for homeless people in its history as part of the fight against COVID-19.
The minister’s statement fell on the 63rd anniversary of the establishment of the National Mutual Aid Foundation (EN).
During the meeting, El Moussali called the operation an honorable achievement for Morocco.
She said that as of April 28, the ministry had helped accomodate 6,324 homeless people and assisted 2,060 others in reuniting with their families since the pandemic’s onset.
The anniversary was also an opportunity to assess EN delegations’ work throughout Morocco to fight the spread of COVID-19 among vulnerable communities, including among homeless people.
The meeting highlighted the delegations’ support for children who live in social welfare centers and children in difficult situations. The delegations have instituted continuous monitoring and follow-up mechanisms to identify, assess, and respond to child safeguarding cases.
These measures include providing remote psychological support for children in social protection centers, instituting reporting mechanisms to coordinate efforts in child protection cases, and implementing a communication service for children and their educators at social welfare institutions.
The minister also highlighted the National Mutual Aid Foundation’s 2019 contribution in providing social services to more than 500,000 people in need, with the collaborative help of more than 4,000 centers and institutions and more than 3,000 organizations.
On March 22, El Moussali announced that the Moroccan government had launched a set of initiatives to provide shelters for homeless people amid the outbreak of COVID-19 and the country’s state of emergency.
The initiatives benefited the homeless communities of Oujda, Inezgane, Agadir, Tangier, Casablanca, Rabat, and Kenitra.
These measures are also in line with the “ministry’s responsibility to protect this category” from the coronavirus outbreak, the minister explained.
During the same announcement, El Moussali said work to help vulnerable communities does not depend only on financial support, but also on “solidarity, commitment to the procedures and measures of the health emergency” to avoid the spread of the virus across the country.
Several organizations and individuals took initiatives to help the homeless community since the state of emergency began on March 20.
The Moroccan Federation of Caterers (FMT) has launched an initiative to host, feed, and shelter over 500 homeless individuals in Casablanca, who also benefited from accomodations, medical treatment clothing and food.
In a similar act of goodwill, a man in Tangier offered a five-story building he owns to local authorities to host some of the city’s homeless until the end of the state of emergency. Two teams of local volunteers, operating on rotating shifts, manage the building, which was rearranged to house men and women separately and to provide 24-hour assistance to all guests.