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Camera pointing directly at the camera! Filming someone sitting down Sound, camera - action! Filming in closeup Helping out with the filming

Morocco Atlas Mountains Film Project

Mouth That Roars was granted support from E.I.L cultural and educational travel (www.eiluk.org) and Youth Opportunities Fund to take a group of young people from Tower Hamlets to spend two weeks making a film with children in Morocco about their lives.

Outcomes:

  • The young people from Tower Hamlets will be trained as Peer Mentors
  • The group will train a group of Berber young people to make a film.
  • The film will explore their culture, everyday life, hopes, fears and aspirations for their futures.
  • The film will be used in Tower Hamlets as an educational tool to explore culture and identity and global issues.
  • The group will provide access to equipment and the film making experience to those who would not normally have access
  • Promote positive thinking about different cultures
  • Create an opportunity for young people to learn from each other
  • Provide a process that is confidence building for young people and will imbue the communities worked in with new energy
  • Promote understanding and tolerance of different cultures
  • Help learn, accept and celebrate diversity
  • Advance the achievement of young people from different communities and to ensure that their participation and evaluation of the world is heard
  • Provide a space and an opportunity for the young people to speak and be heard
  • Capture the hard work, hopes, customs and aspirations of everyday life of the young people involved
  • Raise awareness globally about young people’s lives in Morocco

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What the young people said:

Morocco was great! We helped a group of young people from a small village to make a film about their everyday lives. We stayed in the Berber village of Ait Iktel in the Atlas Mountains. At first, we all found it very difficult adjusting to a totally different culture. Everything was different, from the food to the bathroom!

Everyday we woke up around 7.30-8am, freshened up and breakfast was around 8.30am. Breakfast was the Moroccan traditional, bread and dips: honey, butter, olive oil etc. After that we’d head off to film with the children and be back for lunch at 2.30pm and we’d then meet with the kids again at 3.30-5.30pm to film a bit more.

After that some of the young people would come round to the Chief’s house with us to help edit. Then we’d have some free time before dinner at 8pm. After dinner we always did something fun; play games, go up to the mountain…something was always happening!

Whilst we were there we got to see the children get their bikes, so they could cycle up to secondary school. The bikes were provided by the government, so the children wouldn’t have to give up their education.

Everyone in the village was really friendly and welcoming. Overall we all had so much fun and we would definitely like to go back!
By Tobi Meadows & Vasilisa Forbes

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Some of the things we hoped we would achieve were:

  • To help young people make a film
  • To have fun and enjoy myself
  • To learn a new language
  • To learn about Berber culture
  • To make new friends
  • To gain different perspective on life
  • To experience a new country
  • To work with Morocco children and learn about their lives
  • To come back more positive and learn things that I can use in my everyday life
  • To be challenged
  • To find ways to get over any language barriers
  • To leave god memories behind at the school

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What did we learn?

"I have learnt soooo much on this trip… Learnt about different cultures. How to co-operate. How to time keep. How to eat with my fingers…camp outside…” - Georgia


"That you can learn a lot even if you can’t speak the language and that getting to know your environment is important. I feel this experience has been a refreshing one and that some things that are ‘wants’ to us are ‘needs’ to someone else...

Learning a different way of life, culture and learning a new experience because this helps me to learn about life outside of London.” - Keith


"Have really enjoyed this and this has probably been one of the best trips of my life. I have done more in one week than I’ve ever done in my whole life. I’ve met so many amazing people that I never want to forget and hoper I never do. I’ve learnt so much more than I ever expected I would have done and done things I never thought could do.” - Vasilisa


"I have leant a lot of tings on this trip. The main thing is patience, seeing people live different made me realise that you have to be patient in everyday life. I also learnt to take my education more seriously. As education is something the young people cherished most, and daytimes I forget how important education is.”

"I enjoyed the village the most because the villagers were so welcoming and everyone said ‘hello’. Compared to Marrakech where we were more tourists, the village considered us one of them, which was so generous." - Levi


"I have learnt how to adapt my own lifestyle to fit a completely different life, where the culture, language etc are different. I also learnt to communicate without words better. I certainly achieved my aims and much more than I though I would." - Tobi


"I have learnt to work with children from different backgrounds and cultures and to make a film about these cultures.” - Adam

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Feedback from Morocco

"Hopefully you have had a safe and nice trip back home as well as all the kids.

Working with you as group leaders was so enjoyable and interesting. It was really a wonderful experience. Frankly, we were absolutely surprised with how the group was harmonious, dynamic and helpful. In this program human ties were really beyond any expectation; all the kids were easily involved in the social network of the village.

We would like to thank you warmly for all what you did to chare your experience of film making with the kids of the village who were never given a chance to participate in such activities.

Looking forward to work with you in other programs in other villages or places.

Please, extend the Center for Cross Cultural Learning staff members and our salam and thanks to all the kids as well as to everyone involved in EIL organisation in UK.
Bouchra and Rachid

Thank you very much to you and to "Mouth that Roars" for making it possible to the children of Ait Iktel community to discover a new side of their identity and to experiment a new way of discovering it through film making." - Farah, Thaqafat

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Feedback from Mouth That Roars Facilitators

"The group worked really well together. They did struggle at first to acclimatise and some initially felt homesick. But very quickly they got on with enjoying what the exchange had to offer, the limited time they had in the Village and were really committed to making the film.

I think they were surprised how quickly young people from the Berber village learnt how to use the camera equipment and how clear they were on what they wanted to make and what the film should look like.

Of course, the group also learnt so much from just spending time in the village, playing with children, eating together, sharing time together, it felt like a real wrench for them to start the journey home. The group have all said how much more time they would liked to have spent in the village and would leap at the opportunity to go back. They are very excited about sharing the film with other young people from East London and explaining the journey that they have experienced. It has certainly opened their eyes to a different way of life and who often they take things for granted.”

Acknowledgments
With special thanks to the staff at EIL and Trustees of the EIL Trust and to Mouth That Roars, without whose support and funding, the project would not have been possible.

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