My name is Verity and I’m a student at Cambridge University, reading French and Arabic. I’m currently in my third year, which for language students at Cambridge involves a year abroad to provide an immersive environment in which to practice speaking the target language. Other than my studies, my interests include theatre, which I have been involved in since I was 7, tea (both Moroccan and English!), reading, learning more languages and volunteering/working with children – in my gap year I was a private French tutor and teaching assistant in a drama school and during my second year at uni I volunteered helping a Polish boy with his homework. I chose to spend eight months in Morocco as it provides me with an opportunity to use both of my languages and I have loved my time here so far.
I first arrived in Morocco in January, but I spent my first two months in the capital, Rabat, studying Darija (Moroccan Arabic) at a language school. With two years of Fusha (Standard Arabic) under my belt, I was put into the highest Beginner class and spent the following 8 weeks gaining a rudimentary understanding of Darija (enough to order food and give basic classroom instructions anyway!)
After a fortnight back visiting friends and family in the UK, I was ready to embark on my journey to Taroudannt. It was a reasonably long journey (although most of it was spent getting various trains to Gatwick!) and I was very glad to finally meet Oli, the In-Country Coordinator, and his colleagues at the airport in Agadir. Oli was very kind and showed me around Taroudannt over my first few days which helped me settle in quickly. I’ve been here two months now and everyone I have met has been super friendly and generous, the weather has been glorious and the work has been interesting and varied; in initial conversations with Oli, we had planned for me to volunteer as a French and English teacher, but in reality the work I’ve done thus far has been diverse – French teacher, facilitator of a research project, activity coordinator and translator are all job titles I can now claim! And I am very, very excited to see what my remaining 4 months in Taroudannt have to offer!
Nchoufuk! (See you!)