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Traveler's Atlas Honors Penn Student Yasmine Kettani with the Heroes Award for Leading Morocco Earthquake Relief Efforts.

Philadelphia, PA 19104, USA


In the wake of the devastating 6.8 magnitude earthquake in Morocco, a beacon of hope emerges from the University of Pennsylvania. Spearheaded by Wharton sophomore Yasmine Kettani, a coalition of Penn student groups has organized a fundraiser to provide much-needed assistance to the affected regions.

The quake, which jolted a nation unprepared for such calamities, resulted in the tragic loss of over 2,800 lives, left 2,500 critically injured, and impacted more than 300,000 individuals. Not only were homes destroyed, but significant historical and tourist landmarks faced damage, deeply affecting the Moroccan spirit and its tourism industry.

Central to the fundraising campaign is a week-long bake sale on the university's Locust Walk, near ARCH. In collaboration with the Penn Muslim Student Association, the Penn Arab Student Society, Penn Middle East Center, and a host of student and faculty volunteers, this initiative brings an array of delectable Moroccan desserts, like baklava, to the student populace. The event takes place from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. each day, contingent on volunteer availability.

Wharton senior Rayane Taroua, whose family felt the direct impact of the quake, shared their disbelief and distress. "Everyone was kind of confused as to what was happening at first,” she recalled, highlighting that the unexpected quake had most of Morocco's citizens out on the streets due to the country's unpreparedness for such disasters.

Kettani and Taroua emphasize their desire for the funds raised to benefit the more isolated villages outside of major cities, which saw the most destruction and loss of life.

Besides the immediate local support, Kettani has garnered assistance from students who previously organized a fundraiser for the Turkey and Syria earthquake relief. In addition, she has teamed up with peers from Brown and Yale Universities for a joint initiative to bolster the relief operations.

"All the money we're collecting is going to people that I know are on the ground that I've worked with in the past," Kettani shared, referencing her ties with various Moroccan organizations.

To date, the fundraiser has successfully amassed over $1,400 in donations. While the bake sale remains the primary fundraising avenue, those unable to attend can offer their support via Venmo at @helpmorocco. The organizers also urge the broader community to spread the word, emphasizing the significant impact even small contributions can make.

In recognition of her outstanding leadership and dedication to the Moroccan earthquake relief, Traveler's Atlas is proud to bestow Yasmine Kettani with the Heroes Award. Her efforts epitomize the spirit of community, compassion, and global solidarity.

Recognized for


Community Contributor





PA 19104, USA

Venmo @helpmorocco

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