Dar Si Hmad for Development, Education and Culture is an independent nonprofit organization founded in 2010 promoting local culture and sustainable initiatives through education and the integration of scientific ingenuity in Southwest Morocco. We operate North Africa's largest fog harvesting project, providing villages with access to potable water. Our Water School and Girls' E-Learning Programs build capacity in the Anti-Atlas Mountains. Through our Ethnographic Field School, researchers and students engage with local communities in Agadir, Sidi Ifni, and the rural Aït Baamrane region for meaningful cross-cultural exchange.

Monday, April 11, 2016

Streaming the Water School: Girls in STEM

Last year as part of our #16Days Campaign marking the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, we highlighted our work with young girls in the Aït Baamrane Mountains. Dar Si Hmad's Water School leverages environmental concerns to engage rural communities in experiential, life-changing learning. Children aged 7-13 in Southwest Morocco learn about the societal and natural realities of their world, expanding their capacities for and understandings of global change.

Our "Streaming the Water School" YouTube Series gives you a look into the educational program. The second installment, "Girls in STEM", highlights the School's impact on young women. Girls around the world are discouraged from pursuing science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields at a young age due to persistent sexist stereotypes that imply they are not as capable of science or engineering as their male counterparts. "Girls in STEM" features the young Amazigh girls participating in this spring's edition of the School, who sadly are particularly susceptible to systemic exclusion from STEM fields in rural Southwest Morocco. The Water School seeks to dismantle these internalized messages through lessons on environmental science, animal biology, and technology, which provide opportunities for the girls to explore STEM field. Girls learn how to identify the unique flora and fauna in their communities and Morocco, operate microscopes, and understand the importance of environmental conservation. 

With these activities, bridges are built between girls and boys through the mutual understanding that collaboration is the best way to create a sustainable future for generations to come.  The Water School is also led by Moroccan women who serve as inspirational role models for the girls and encourage them to achieve whatever they want in their lives.


Check out the most recent episode of "Streaming the Water School":



Promoting girls in STEM is just one of our many programs contributing to women's empowerment in Southwest Morocco. Dar Si Hmad has clearly established women’s empowerment as a driving force throughout our work in environmental development, education, and intercultural exchange. We recognize that women bear the brunt of poverty and resource scarcity, and our work focuses on training women of all backgrounds and skill levels to take on leadership and decision-making roles to ensure truly sustainable development. Simultaneously, research has shown that investments in women are much more likely to be reinvested in future generations and show tangible improvements in the quality of life for their children. Throughout our projects, Dar Si Hmad’s approach focuses on enhancing quality educational opportunities and sustainable practices for vulnerable populations, especially women and girls.

In celebration of our "'Streaming the Water School': Girls in STEM" episode, Dar Si Hmad has launched a new "Women's Empowerment" page. Visit the new space for an overview of the many ways we are promoting gender parity for women of all ages around Morocco and the world.