Help Village of Hope Today

Last year a large group of my friends from NYU traveled to Morocco to work with Village of Hope. Founded in 1957, Village of Hope is comprised of foreign workers who choose to move to Morocco to serve orphans rather than adopting the children and taking them from their home country.

On Monday, March 8, the authorities came to Village of Hope and told the 21 orphanage workers that they had to leave the country immediately. Forced from their homes, they were put on a bus and taken from their children.

While the workers could not formally adopt the children, they had completed all paperwork and were legally recognized Christian foster parents. They have been deported for allegedly proselytizing.

This is only one action in a series of events taking place against foreigners this week in Morocco. Another nearby orphanage is also being questioned. After their parents are deported, the orphans either face street life or a mega-orphanage run by the state. And so the 31 children of Village of Hope have the tragic distinction of having lost their parents twice.

**UPDATE**4:25 CST Wednesday (thank you Laura Z.)

1) The Village of Hope was caring for a number of kids with special needs.  Simo, a boy with cerebral palsy, has been taken to a local hospital because no one knew how to care for him once his parents left.  His life is literally at stake now. Another boy, Haitaim, has HIV and no one knows his medicine regime.  And Samir has acute asthma, which you can imagine will not get noticed by the frenzied local care-takers in the midst of the craziness.  These children need proper care immediately!  This is no longer just about getting the staff back to their kids, but about making sure these children are properly cared for.
2) A nearby home of a similar nature, The Haven, is apparently being raided by the police currently.  The events that led up to VOH’s staff deportation are now happening at The Haven, a home that cares for dozens more.
3) The troubling events in Morocco have received major attention in Holland, New Zealand, and other countries where VOH staff originated from.  Clearly, the Moroccan government has dramatically changed their interactions with Christians, and more aid workers are in jeopardy of being deported.  We have rumors of a number of countries getting involved: the US, Canada, Ireland, Britain, Holland, France, New Zealand, Switzerland.

What you can do:

1) The organization is trying to raise awareness, with hopes that international pressure will allow them to rejoin their children. Join their Facebook group: Save Village of Hope. There you will find reports from a number of other news sources. You should also see the organization’s website.

3) If you have faith of some kind, please pray for the children, their parents, and the other orphanages and foreign laborers working in Morocco to prevent homelessness, trafficking, abuse and despair. Pray also for the Moroccan authorities and citizens, who have more power than anyone in this matter, and for Moroccan children’s organizations.

3) If you have any connections to politicians, the media, etc., please contact the appropriate name listed on the family’s official statement.

Please feel free to forward this article to anyone you know. The same rule applies for the group’s Facebook page.

Lastly, I’d like to say how grateful I am for the men and women I went to school with who have worked tirelessly in the last day to get this message out. I consider it a privilege to write about this issue, and to call you friends. So thank you.

Let’s get started!

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Comments
11 Responses to “Help Village of Hope Today”
  1. Joanna Wright says:

    Hi,

    I was just at VoH 9 weeks ago. This truly is devastating.

    Thank you so much for posting this excellent template. Have already contacted local Politicians/MPs, members of Parliament, Christian Legal Aid Agencies and will forward the template to all of the agencies you mentioned. 250 of my contacts are also circulating a slightly different email, but I’ll give them this one too.

    Thank you so much. Keep up the great work.

    Joanna

    Northern Ireland.

    • Sam Hawthorn says:

      Hey Joanna,

      is there any chance you could pass on that email list to me at {e-mail address removed by moderator to prevent spam}?

      I’m working for one of the Village of Hope trustees to put a massive email list together!

      Thanks,

      Sam

  2. jimmychalk says:

    Great resource, J. Thanks.

  3. Sam Hawthorn says:

    Hey,

    my name is Sam Hawthorn and I’m working on behalf of one of the VoH’s trustees to pull together a mailing list.

    They’re meeting this week to discuss an action plan, get permission from the families to publisice and so on. Once they’ve done this they’ll be launching a campaign of some kind, and obviously word of mouth is going to be really important.

    We are hoping that we can truncate all the communications through a single point so they can make sure the right information is getting in front of as many people as possible.

    Until the trustees have met and decided a course of action I’ve been instructed to do nothing other than collect contact details, because this issue is really sensitive, mainly because of the culture of the country but also because of the situation for the families.

    What I’m wondering is if it would be possible for you to get anyone who contacts you to email {e-mail removed by moderator to prevent spam}. I’m not saying other people can’t do other things and I don’t want to tread on anyones’ toes, it’s just really important that by the end of the week we have a big, solid database of people to contact with up to date, relevant and correct information.

    This blog is awesome and what you and Elizabeth have done is inspiring. The collation of that email pdf list is award-worthy!

    Bless you,

    Sam Hawthorn

  4. Peter says:

    Some more info here:

    http://theagetocome.wordpress.com/2010/03/09/christian-orphanage-forcibly-shut-down-in-morocco/

    I’m getting this out through as many media contacts that I have.

  5. Frank says:

    Terrible, these neglected childen found Hope, care and Love and this is not just removed but ripped away without any preparation. Why can this happen.

  6. KM says:

    Can I enquire as to who wrote the official press release? I would like to get in touch with them. Thank you.

  7. Declan says:

    This is the english translation of the French
    Expelled foreign nationals of Morocco for contrary acts to the laws in force (official statement) Folds back, 08/03/10 – the Moroccan authorities took, lately, of the decisions d’ expulsion out of the national territory, with l’ opposition to foreign nationals, of various nationalities, which made guilty d’ contrary acts with the laws in force. Among expelled 16 people appear, between residents and leader d’ an orphanage located in the commune of Ain Leuh (province d’ Ifrane), indicates Monday an official statement of the ministry of l’ interior, specifying that the interested parties made profitable l’ indigence of some families and targeted their minors qu’ they dealt with, in violation of the procedures in force as regards Kafala of the abandoned children or orphans. Under cover d’ actions of benevolence, this s’ group; also devoted to activities of proselytism aiming of the n’, infants; not having more than ten years, the same source adds, noting that within the framework of l’ inquire ordered by the general prosecutor, of the hundreds of leaflet and by CD of proselytism were seized. L’ together measures taken by the Moroccan authorities s’ register within the framework of the fight carried out against the attempts at propagation of the creed evangelist, aiming at shaking the faith of the Moslems. The ministry holds, d’ another share, to stress that d’ measurements; expulsion of the national territory were taken in accordance with the legal tendencies in force, for the safeguarding of the religious and spiritual values of the Kingdom.

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  1. […] UPDATE: Further posts here, here, here and here. […]

  2. […] Save Village of Hope Campaign Underway Published March 11, 2010 Africa , Children , Christianity , Free Speech , Health , Islam , Morocco , Politics , Protest , United States , orphans Leave a Comment Here is a brief update on Save Village of Hope (if you do not know about this situation yet, first please read yesterday’s post): […]



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