One month has passed since a devastating earthquake struck Morocco, leaving nearly 3,000 lives lost and communities across the Atlas Mountains in ruins. As the dust settles, locals now face the arduous task of rebuilding their lives and homes amidst the wreckage.
Road to Recovery
In Amizmiz, a village located 58 kilometers from Marrakech, signs of recovery are slowly emerging amid the debris. The heartbeat of village life is gradually returning, but the path to recovery promises to be long and challenging. Locals grapple with issues such as housing, economic revitalization, and the need for psychological support for their neighbors.
Living in makeshift conditions
Soukaina El Bouch and her family have relocated to a makeshift tent on the town’s outskirts following the recent disaster. Living conditions are far from ideal, lacking essential utilities like electricity, bathrooms, kitchens, and toilets. The struggle is palpable for everyone affected.
The Moroccan government has outlined a strategy to aid families in rebuilding their homes if they were damaged or destroyed. However, it’s important to note that renters like Khadija Rajifi, whose homes were among the structures razed by the earthquake, will not qualify for this assistance. Those without prior homeownership will only receive a modest stipend of 2,500 dirhams ($243), while homeowners will be eligible for rebuilding funds to return to their properties.
Resilience and determination
Despite the enduring scars left by the earthquake, there are signs that the Amizmiz community is on the path to recovery. Some businesses have displayed remarkable resilience by boldly reopening their doors, with owners determined to make a comeback despite significant challenges.
For example, Abderrahim Ait Boujemaa recently reopened his convenience store, which had to shut down due to earthquake-related damage. The store is situated on the ground floor of a three-story building, with cracks still visible on the exterior walls of the upper stories, requiring substantial repairs. While some loyal customers have returned, many others have sadly passed away or left the area. Ait Boujemaa is particularly concerned about customers with outstanding credit for pre-earthquake purchases who have yet to settle their debts.
A Glimpse of Hope
Amidst the aftermath of this catastrophic natural disaster, the town of Amizmiz and its residents face an undeniably challenging journey to recovery. However, their resilience and determination serve as beacons of hope, pointing towards a brighter future.