Six months later: 'Morocco remembers, so should we'— IFRC's call for continued support

Volunteer from Moroccan Red Crescent walks through neighbourhood hit hard by the earthquake on 8 September, 2023.

Volunteer from Moroccan Red Crescent walks through neighbourhood hit hard by the earthquake on 8 September, 2023.

Photo: Benoit Carpentier/IFRC

Geneva/Beirut/Marrakech, 7 March 2024: As we reach the six-month mark since the devastating earthquake struck the Moroccan High Atlas Mountains, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) amplifies its call for urgent and ongoing support to meet the persistent needs of affected communities. The earthquake, with a magnitude of 6.8, occurred on 8 September 2023, leaving thousands still battling the absence of stable shelter, clean water, and essential sanitation facilities. 

In response to this disaster, the Moroccan Red Crescent Society (MRCS), with the support of the IFRC, has delivered aid to over 60,300 people, navigating challenging circumstances with resilience and determination. With 450 staff and over 8,500 volunteers, the MRCS has been instrumental in rehabilitating 138 water points across 16 localities, distributing over 5,411 hygiene kits, and ensuring access to emergency shelters and psychosocial support throughout the affected regions. Their unwavering commitment highlights the MRCS's auxiliary role to the Moroccan Government's response and recovery efforts. 

Sami Fakhouri, Head of Delegation, IFRC in Morocco and Tunisia, emphasizes the importance of collective action in these trying times: 

“Our response to this earthquake has shown the power of humanity in the face of adversity. However, the road to recovery is long, and the needs of the affected communities remain immense. Six months on, Morocco's people carry the memory of that day, and it's incumbent upon us all to continue remembering and to act. Now more than ever, we must continue to stand in solidarity with the people of Morocco to rebuild not just their homes but their lives.” 

The earthquake's aftermath has underscored the critical need for shelters that are both winterized and waterproof, capable of enduring the region's harsh winters and rainy seasons, alongside the pressing need for improved access to clean water and sanitation facilities to avert health crises. The demand for non-food items like blankets, clothing, and hygiene products remains high, reflecting the diverse and pressing needs of communities on their path to recovery. 

Abdel Salam Makroumy, Director General of MRCS, reflects on the resilience shown and the road ahead: 
“Working alongside local authorities has been crucial in sustaining our humanitarian relief efforts. But our journey from relief to recovery is paved with the determination and heart of our volunteers and the communities we serve. As we look to the future, our goal is not only to recover from this disaster but to build back better, ensuring that our communities are more resilient and better prepared for any future challenges.” 

Despite the efforts of MRCS and its partners, the IFRC's Emergency Appeal for the MRCS response, targeting CHF 75 million, has so far raised 35% of its goal. The MRCS and IFRC extend their gratitude to partners and donors for their generous contributions. 

The IFRC calls on the international community, donors, and partners to redouble their support and help bridge this gap through flexible and long-term funding. Only through sustained, collective effort can we ensure that the people of Morocco receive the support they need to recover and thrive in the aftermath of this devastating earthquake. 

More information  

To fund the emergency appeal and support the people of Morocco, visit the IFRC website. 

For b-roll footage, visit the IFRC newsroom. 

To request an interview, contact: [email protected] 

In Geneva: 

Tommaso Della Longa: +41 79 708 43 67 

Mrinalini Santhanam: +41 76 381 50 06 

In Beirut: 

Mey Alsayegh: +961 3 229 352 


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