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Now our 2017 #GiveAFlyingDuck competition is in full flight, we have some lovely news from the team at the Tansghart Woodwork Centre in Asni, Morocco. The centre, established and supported by the Eve Branson Foundation, is taking part in our #GiveAFlyingDuck competition in the best way that they know how - by creating their very own duck!
Judging by the size of this beast of a duck, he won't be taking flight anytime soon as he's absolutely huge! This whopper is approximately 45cm wide, 125cm long and 95cm high and is by far the largest VLE duck we have ever seen. This special duck was made from reclaimed wood from felled trees sourced from the river valley between Tansghart and Kasbah Tamadot, and took the team at the centre about a week to make.
The expert hands that helped produce this duck can be seen in this picture above.
Back row L to R - Abderahim, Houssein, Youssef, Abdelatif. Front row kneeling/sitting L to R - Mouad, Ayoub, Mohamed.
Green Sahara Furniture, the foundation's business partner for Tansghart Woodwork Centre and a team of three volunteers from Letterfrack, Ireland, collaborated with the trainees in the design and construction too: Abdelkbir, Belaid and David from Morocco with Paul, Craig & Daniel from Ireland. Paul can be seen turning the tarboosh (red fez hat) on our new lathe in the image below.
David Bult, founder of Green Sahara Furniture, gave us the low-down on how this duck took shape:
"Three furniture makers from the west coast of Ireland volunteered a week of their time to help a woodwork centre in a small village in southern Morocco - they even brought a bit of Irish weather with them as it rained - even snowed - during their time here. The Tansghart Woodwork Centre guys really appreciated getting new skills and safety training - and also benefitted from the donated handtools they received. After a productive week working side-by-side, the Irish team left with memories of teamwork, laughter, shared meals in Moroccan homes, daily views of Mount Toubkal, and the unbelievable generosity of the people from this region. Language barriers didn't slow us down - instead the TWC guys improved their English, the Irish guys learned how to "depanee bee" (Moroccan Arabic for fixing things in creative ways) and we even exchanged some Berber and Irish phrases. Together with "dem lot" (a bit of Dublin slang), the highlight of the week was building a big, reclaimed wood duck - part rubber ducky, part fun sculpture. Lots of smiles, handshakes, photos, and contact details were exchanged at the end of the training. And the morning we departed, each of us were gifted a hand-knit scarf that Ayoub's family members had worked on until 2am the night before! I honestly believe everybody, myself included, finished the week knowing small acts of generosity and kindness CAN make the world a better place to work and live."
If you would like to see the duck for yourself you can. It currently has pride of place at the Tansghart Woodwork Centre and guests staying at Kasbah Tamadot can visit the centre as part of their stay. During your visit, make sure to take a snap of you and the duck and tag your picture using #GiveAFlyingDuck. You will even be able to carve your name on the duck as a lasting memento of your visit. Throughout 2017, we are encouraging our guests and employees alike to show how they are giving back, and a visit to this vibrant woodwork centre should definitely be at the top of your list.
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