Back to

First day with homestays

Hannah, Birney, Sydney and some host family members.

Hi everyone! It’s Hannah, Syd, Birney and Hanae, our amazing host sister. We are currently writing this post in Hanae’s family’s riad, a traditional Moroccan home. Today, we arrived in Azrou, a small city in the middle Atlas.  There are three families our group is staying with, and we are sharing a home with Hanae, 15; Hakima, 36; and Haja, 70.  They are not only welcoming us into their family and home but we have been learning so much and experiencing their vast culture.  When we first arrived, we were welcomed with mint tea, a Moroccan must-have, and an amazing beef and prune tajine meal.  We then met up with the entire group to learn about Islam with a representative from Cross Cultural Solutions.  Personal highlights include: Hannah’s interest in connecting culture to history, Birney’s appreciation of the similarities shared between religion, and Sydney’s enjoyment of the variety of holidays Muslims celebrate. After, we went back to Hanae’s house and met her aunt, a couple of her cousins, and other extended family. They were so sweet and it was so fun to see the wonderful family dynamic they share.  We were also appreciating how willing they were to make us a part of the family.  After, us girls along with Hakima, our host mother, and Saa, Hanae’s cousin, went out to Akchmer, a massive rock that sits in the middle of Azrou.  We then explored the city and took many pictures with the breathtaking views.  We returned to the house and hung out with the family, laughing and talking in a variety of English, Arabic, French and Spanish.  Already we feel so close to our family, and we are excited for the days to come.  Tomorrow we are planning on going to the suq, a traditional Moroccan market! Parents: if you’ve actually read this far, congrats.  We are still alive and well!

Phil, Joao, Mikkel and some host family members.


Esha, Hadley and some host family members.