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Photography tour to benefit Moroccan youth

Marrakech based companies partner with American based company for photography and cultural exchange

Marrakech, Morocco, 12 October 2015 Three Marrakech based organizations have teamed up with an American based company to provide an opportunity for Moroccan youth to learn the art of digital photography. This photography tour is the inaugural event of the collaboration between Open Doors Morocco, Creative Interactions and Marrakech Henna Art Cafe with the aim of promoting cultural exchange. The cafe provides a home and support for El Fenn Maroc, a registered cultural association dedicated to building bridges across cultures through art by supporting Moroccan artists, their families and communities. On October 13 and 14, volunteers from The Giving Lens will be in Marrakech to collaborate with El Fenn Maroc, the non-profit organization selected by The Giving Lens as their partner in Morocco. They will conduct a workshop on photography and cultural exchange for seventeen area youth and six local photographers. This event will establish a photography program at El Fenn. The Giving Lens will donate digital cameras to be used over the course of the program, which will continue for several months. The Giving Lens was founded on three passions; travel, photography, and giving back. They achieve these goals by offering international travel photography workshops led by professional photographers. During each excursion, participants volunteer their time and talents to a local non-profit and share the images and profits with the NGO. They will start their Morocco Tour with language and cultural orientation and training provided by Creative Interactions. After two days in Marrakech, the group will travel with Open Doors Morocco to other areas in Morocco. Open Doors Morocco arranges customized cultural travel experiences all over Morocco and contracts legally with a fully licensed transport company. The organization strives to convey a compelling and unique “sense of place”, promote safe experiences that refresh and cause recipients to reflect on their own identity, and revitalize local communities in Morocco by utilizing local suppliers and cooperatives. Creative Interactions is a Marrakech based training organization with a focus on language and culture. Their mission is to help people develop mindsets and skills to navigate in today’s global community. They provide cultural and language training, consulting, and cultural activities that enhance travelers’ experiences of Morocco. Marrakech Henna Art Cafe, provides a home and support for El Fenn Maroc. The cafe is located in the central medina just three minutes walk from Djemaa el Fna and features two galleries, a gift shop, food and drinks, and two terraces for outdoor seating. Find out more about these unique businesses and their involvement in cross cultural interaction and community development in Morocco by clicking on the hyperlinks and follow the progress of The Giving Lens Morocco Tour on social media.    

Three companies collaborate to promote cultural exchange

Marrakech based companies join hands to encourage cross-cultural interaction

Marrakech, Morocco, 8 June 2015 Creative Interactions, Marrakech Henna Art Café and Open Doors Morocco, three Marrakech-based companies, have formed a collaboration to promote cultural exchange, with 10% of profits generated going to El Fenn Maroc, a charitable organization. What do a training organization, café and travel operator have in common? A shared vision of promoting cultural exchange and authentic experiences. The directors of these three companies (who happen to be women) are passionate about creating jobs, empowering people through skills training and partnering with local communities. “That’s why 10% of profits generated through this collaboration will go to El Fenn Maroc, a non-profit cultural association dedicated to building bridges across cultures through visual art and promoting traditional Moroccan arts,” says Lori Gordon, co-owner of the Marrakech Henna Art Café. Whether through cultural and language training, visual arts or experiential travel with an educational twist, Creative Interactions, Marrakech Henna Art Café and Open Doors Morocco want people to engage with and connect deeply with the people and culture of Morocco. “We want people to experience the real Morocco through language, art, and travel. And at the same time for Moroccans to be empowered through cultural exchange, skills development and education,” adds Nancy Lauer, director of Open Doors Morocco. “What we offer are unique and immersive travel experiences, so drop by the café, book a tour or sign up for a workshop with us!” invites Rhoena Facun, director of Creative Interactions.   Marrakech Henna Art Cafe is situated in the Marrakech Medina and home to El Fenn Maroc, a charitable organization dedicated to building bridges across cultures through visual art and promoting traditional Moroccan arts. We offer guests refreshing drinks, traditional cuisine, fine art and henna. The cafe is a collaboration between Rachid Karkouch and Lori K. Gordon. Rachid is a Moroccan Berber who has lived in Marrakech for many years, and has a background in riad and cafe management. Lori K. Gordon is an American artist, writer, and Founder and President of Six Degrees Consortium, a public charity whose mission is the building of bridges across cultures through visual art. Contact: Email: lorikgordon@gmail.com Phone: +212 6 66 77 93 04   Open Doors Morocco is a relatively new USA owned travel agency based in Marrakech, Morocco. We focus only on travel inside of Morocco and legally contract with a fully licensed transport company. As an authentic tour operator we strive to do the following:
  •  Convey a compelling and unique “sense of place” such that our guests recognize that their travels have brought them to a place that – in its unique mix of people, culture, history, geography, and economy – is distinct from the place they call “home.”
  •  Promote safe experiences that refresh and cause recipients to reflect on their own identity and, as a result, be transformed in some way. This occurs through meaningful cultural exchange between guests, hosts, and other local entities.
  •  Revitalize local communities in Morocco by utilizing local suppliers and cooperatives that behave responsibly rather than visiting the typical souvenir shops found alongside many vacation hotspots.
Contact: Email: nancy@opendoorsmorocco.com Phone+212 6 98 75 35 64 Whatsapp +212 6 98 75 35 64 In the US: +1-888-462-3453   Creative Interactions is a Marrakech based training organization with a focus on language and culture. Our mission is to help people develop mindsets and skills to navigate in today’s global community. We provide cultural and language training, consulting and cultural activities that enhance travellers’ experience of Morocco. Creative Interactions is passionate about empowering the local community and giving first-time visitors a chance to truly connect with locals to gain a richer travel experience and stay in Morocco. Contact Email: Rhoena@creative-interactions.com Phone: +212 6 11 03 05 05