Manira's Movement: Travel, Tourism and a Sustainable Future
Updated: Sep 1, 2019
Manira Palm encourages travel and tourism to contribute to a sustainable future. We are a self-sustained luxury holiday villa situated on the outskirts of #Marrakech, overlooking the Atlas Mountains. We welcome guests into our eco villa and strive to create lasting memories and enriching experiences for all. Our planet and our people are important to us therefore we take priority in supporting local charities and communities in and around Marrakech. With our support, it is this which will allow tourists to immerse into the real Morocco and its authentic culture.
What does a sustainable future look like?
In 2015, the #UnitedNations developed an agenda for sustainable development which aims to end poverty, tackle inequalities and combat climate change by 2030. We believe tourism creates an opportunity to raise awareness to these problems and with this opportunity, Manira Palm will strive to contribute to achieving a sustainable future.
Our aim is to provide guests with a first hand fulfilling experience of Marrakech which will subsequently support the local people, local charities, local business’ and local communities.
Can Manira Palm contribute to a sustainable future?
As part of the United Nations (UN) agenda for a sustainable future, there were 17 Sustainable Development Goals #SDGs outlined. Whilst we understand the difficulty in achieving just one of these goals, at Manira Palm we would like to do our bit and contribute in some way. Whether it be connecting guests to charities that are aligned with these goals or being conscious of our energy resources and waste management. Overtime, with more experience and more connections we hope to increase are contributions significantly to protect our planet and the people we share it with.
Read below to find out how Manira Palm will contribute to the 17 SDGs.
Goal One #NoPoverty
The poverty rate in Morocco is around 4.2% with 18% of the rural population reported as being poor. This equates to 4 million people living on less than $1.25 per day. Low illiteracy rates amongst the population are contributing to this financial inequality. Education can help rise people out of these detrimental circumstances and prevent them from falling back in.
It is important Manira Palm supports transformation change in people’s lives and communities to help generate job opportunities for the poor. Manira Palm can arrange excursions to visit The Eve Branson Foundation whose mission is to provide young people with skills training in Atlas Mountain Communities. Here you will have the opportunity to partake in making traditional Berber crafts. Also, a contribution will also be made at the end of the year to a Moroccan charity that is helping end poverty. Find out more at the end of the article.
Goal Two #ZeroHunger
Hunger and malnutrition puts people at risk of disease. In Morocco there are conscious efforts being made for better food security and nutrition. With agriculture being the largest source of income for poor households, Manira Palm only sources food from the local markets directly supporting the local farmers and small rural communities. Our food waste is kept to a minimum as we make sustainable food choices.
We will be offering cooking classes for our guests with the intention to make extra meals which will be delivered to the homeless. A charitable organisation, Zero Hunger will make this possible as they help pin point hunger zones all around Morocco.
We should strive to promote healthy lives for societies to flourish. Manira Palm will offer daily yoga classes to promote health and well-being for our guests. We also share the importance of a healthy lifestyle by eating organic foods, cooked fresh daily.
Goal Four #QualityEducation
Over the years, there has been much improvement to the number of children in Moroccan schools – however in 2017 there were still only 63% of children enrolled in secondary school education. With a high number of youth lacking basic mathematic and literacy skills - there is still a call for help.
Manira Palm runs a pack for purpose initiative. We regularly visit the local school and find out what equipment they are in need of. A list is regularly updated on our website and we welcome guests to kindly donate any essentials if they have a little extra space in their luggage.
Goal Five #GenderEquality
The Global Gender Gap Report 2018 reveals Morocco comes 137th out of 149 countries – evidently there is still a lot of work to be done. There has been visible progress in opportunity and wage equality however, inequality is seen in education attainment and efforts should be directed to promote education for all.
Our employees joined the family based on their values not their gender. We strive to empower women and indefinitely promote equal pay. One fantastic charity who strive to empower Moroccan women is Project Soar - educating and helping girls understand their Value, Voice, Body, Rights, Path. Check them out and show them some support.
Goal Six #CleanWater
Overall, around 83% of people in Morocco have access to a clean water supply. At Manira Palm, we adopt good practices to minimise our water waste and recycle where necessary. Our small permaculture plot will contribute in some way to restoring water-related eco-systems.
Goal Seven #CleanEnergy
Morocco is an emergent country for renewable energy ranking 13th in the world for energy attractiveness (RECAI, 2017). Morocco is aiming to have 42% of its electricity from renewable sources and is currently on track to achieving this goal. With 21 solar panels installed, Manira Palm generates renewable energy for our home. All our bulbs are energy efficient conserving the energy that we generate.
Goal Eight #DecentWork
At the beginning of 2019, the youth unemployment rate in Morocco was 24%. Even though down from last year, this figure still requires some improvement especially because youth unemployment is an economic priority in Morocco as ordered by King Mohammed VI.
Manira Palm offers a number of job opportunities, with good working conditions and equal pay for all. A goal for the future is to provide job opportunities to those from less educated backgrounds and offer on the job training. We are keen to support those who are providing youth with the best opportunities to transition into decent jobs. Good work is often a result of good education, so Manira Palm will continue to support this aspect too. See Goal 4 for how Manira Palm contributes to quality education.
Thankfully Morocco has one of the most highly developed infrastructures in Africa therefore we should be conscious of working towards collaborating with NGOs that promote sustainable growth in developing countries throughout Africa.
Goal Ten #ReducedInequalities
Racism, homophobia, transphobia and religious tolerance is still prevalent in the oldest democracies. To promote equality, investment in education, health and social protection will help eradicate poverty and income inequalities. Education can raise awareness of the inclusion of all, bridging the gap between gender and those with disabilities.
"One thing we can do for free is be kind to all – empower and promote people no matter their shape, size, skin colour, sexual preference or religion"
Goal Eleven #SustainableCommunities
It is important to build cities which accommodate a decent quality of life creating shared possibilities. Let’s create safety within out cities, good transport links and develop a sense of community.
Here at Manira Palm we aim to provide an authentic holiday experience. Our goal is to not only ensure you leave feeling part of a Moroccan community, but also a member of the Manira Palm family.
Goal Twelve #ResponsibleConsumption
Around 1.3 billion tonnes of food is wasted each year - that equates to one third of all food produced. Household energy consumption contributes to 21% of carbon emissions. We are also polluting water faster than nature can recycle and purify.
At Manira Palm, we have purified water for guests. We are plastic free, promote good waste management practices and we strive to recycle. Furthermore, we generate our own renewable energy and are working towards producing our own organic fruit and vegetables.
Goal Thirteen #ClimateAction
Here at Manira Palm we strive to reduce our carbon emissions by being conscious of the way we work. Take a look at the UN’s “Lazy Person Guide to Saving the World” to see what we are currently doing to contribute to Goal 13. You might be surprised at how many ways you are contributing too! The United Nations also have a Climate Neutral Now Pledge which Manira Palm is aiming to take before we open the doors in 2020.
Goal Fourteen #LifeBelowWater
Recently, a law was amended in Morocco to prohibit the manufacture, import, export, marketing or use of plastic bags. This is a huge leap forward to help conserve our oceans.
To contribute to the protection of our waters, Manira Palm makes ocean-friendly choices when buying products. We promote a no plastic environment and guests will receive their own reusable water bottle as a gift from us for their stay. To slow down the rising sea levels, we are always working towards reducing our carbon footprint by adopting eco-friendly energy practices. An ambition for the future is to have the opportunity to collaborate Morocco’s coastlines and support beach clean ups.
Goal Fifteen #LifeOnLand
Here at Manira Palm we are developing our own permaculture plot to contribute to the health of the planet. Whilst we aim to produce a good proportion of our food in the future, our current food is only purchased from local people with organic and sustainable practices. As our human activities are contributing to climate change which negatively impacts biodiversity, we are also conscious of our efforts to minimise this. See Goal 13 for more information.\
Goal Sixteen #Peace
People have the right to feel safe and be free from fear and violence. It is important for governments and communities to work together to implement lasting solutions to deliver justice and social inclusion for all.
“Be the change – promote inclusion and respect towards people of different backgrounds, ethnic origins, religions, gender, sexual orientations or different opinions. Together, we can help to improve conditions for a life of dignity for all.” - United Nations
Goal Seventeen #Partnerships
To end poverty, tackle inequalities and combat climate change, we need to join together to succeed.
So can Manira Palm contribute to a sustainable future?
There are a number of correlating factors and by improving one of the goals, Manira Palm has the potential to also impact others. Even by doing a little, it can help a lot. We need to pull together as a family and look after our brothers and sisters of the world. Let’s strive for a #SustainableFuture. Let’s help protect our people and protect our planet. Every contribution is worthwhile and Manira Palm is striving to be the change in the tourism industry.
What is Zakat?
Zakat means charity and it is one of the core pillars of Islam which defines the character of Muslims. Zakat literally means purification. It is the concept of giving to charity and sharing wealth with communities in need which purifies ones heart of greed. In the Islamic culture, it is an obligation of those who have received wealth from God, to respond with a donation to charity of 2.5% of their annual wealth and assets. With 99% of Moroccans practising Islam, Manira Palm would like to align with this belief and donate 2.5% of its profits each year to a charity in Morocco which supports one of the 17 sustainable development goals. Being in year one, a charity will be chosen which works towards supporting the poor and ending poverty.
Please let us know if you would like to recommend any charities that help deal with poverty in Morocco and we will strive to raise awareness through our social media channels.