Course Locations - Morocco

Zawiya Ahansal, Morocco

Aerie Backcountry Medicine is offering a Term in Wilderness Rescue Course in Zawiya Ahansal, Morocco from October 1 to October 30, 2014. Anyone interested in pursuing work in remote, international settings should have these certifications. This is a great opportunity to get your IWFR and rope rescue certification while in the field. The Term in Wilderness Rescue (TWR) provides students with industry-leading certifications earned through unparalleled experiential learning opportunities. Our rigorous academic program employs realistic scenarios, interactive lectures, as well as technical rescue curriculums in a variety of settings to ensure a well-rounded, challenging and rewarding educational experience.  Our goal is not only to provide professional-level certifications, but also a broad education in wilderness skills and an aptitude for leadership  to ensure that our students are capable of preventing and responding to emergencies in any environment. Our Term in Wilderness Rescue students receive the most comprehensive education in wilderness and wilderness emergency medical skills available anywhere.  This course can be taken for 12 upper division Montana University System credits. (additional fee applies) This program is in participation with the Atlas Cultural Foundation, an American NGO that has been working in the region since 2006 on locally initiated community development projects in the fields of cultural preservation, community health and education.

Aerie's 90 hour International Wilderness First Responder (IWFR) course is designed for outdoor professionals and outdoor enthusiasts traveling and working in internationally, preparing them to care for injuries and illness in remote, challenging environments and in the developing world. The course is fast-paced, challenging, hands-on and fun. The IWFR has a special focus on international-health and travel-medicine.

Aerie's nationally recognized Wilderness First Responder (WFR) courses address injury and illness prevention, patient assessment, long-term patient management, improvised splint and litter construction, and environmental emergencies, international illnesses, while stressing the thought processes unique to caring for patients in remote environments. The international WFR takes long term patient care to the next level, focusing on working within the medical limitations of the developing world to prepare students for complex medical situations while abroad.   Our instructors are professional care providers, with extensive international travel and many years of outdoor leadership experience. Students also receive adult CPR certification.

Term in Wilderness Rescue

The TWR provides students with industry-leading certifications earned through unparalleled experiential learning opportunities. Our rigorous academic program employs realistic scenarios, interactive lectures, as well as technical rescue curriculums in a variety of settings to ensure a well-rounded, challenging and rewarding educational experience.  Our goal is not only to provide professional-level certifications, but also a broad education in wilderness skills and a aptitude for  leadership  to ensure that our students are capable of preventing and responding to emergencies in any environment. Our Term in Wilderness Rescue students receive the most comprehensive education in wilderness and wilderness emergency medical skills available anywhere.

Program Highlights

  • 12 upper-division university semester credits
  • Aerie  International Wilderness First  Responder  (IWFR)
  • Outdoor Leadership and Wilderness risk management skills
  • American Heart Association Healthcare Provider CPR 
  • Rope Rescue Technician or Swiftwater Rescue Technician (SRT) depending on location of course.
  • Search and Rescue Technician (SARTECH)
  • Navigation and orienteering skills
  • Community service project

 

  • Aerie's Term in wilderness rescue is a true immersion in international wilderness medicine.  In addition to learning IWFR skills at in beautiful and remote Atals mountains of Morocco near the village of  Zawiya Ahansal, students practice their medical skills with 4+ weeks in and around wilderness areas.  Each week focuses on a different skill essential to the wilderness rescue practitioner, and includes: wilderness survival; high-angle rescue; search and rescue; land navigation and outdoor leadership.  During the extended backpacking trip students will be establishing several base camps in the area allows time to set up and practice extended rescue and evacuation scenarios
  • Students learn to care for themselves and the injured with few supplies and little outside help. Throughout the Term, students hone skills in backcountry navigation, including regular practice in the field use of topographic maps, compass and GPS. Furthermore, students learn a broad range of survival techniques such as emergency fire building and improvised shelter construction in order to provide quality care in extended evacuations.    While practicing high and low-angle rope rescue, students gain their Rope Rescue Technician certification . 
  • While in the village if Zawiya Ahansal , students augment their IWFR skills with and opportunity to complete a service project in the village to cultivate leadership skills and give back to the welcoming community of Zawiya. In addition students will live with the sheikh, tribal leader, of Zawiya Ahansal and his family providing a unique and life changing cultural aspect to this term .  All of these experiences are made possible by Atlas Cultural Adventures and Aerie's excellent network of community relationships.

The program culminates with a week in the remote backcountry of the Atlas Mountains completing  search and rescue training, where students earn their SARTECH certification while learning to navigate through the international  backcountry, finding, caring for and moving patients as they travel across challenging terrain.  In a final practical experience, students put their route-finding and wilderness medical treatment skills to the test in a multiday rescue scenario encompassing all the the technical skills learned in the course

WHAT TO EXPECT

Zawiya Ahansal is a remote and mountainous region located between 5,000 and 12,000 feet in Morocco’s Central High Atlas Mountains. It is a high desert region with temperature extremes in June and July ranging between 32 and 110 F. Regional equivalents are the City of Rocks in Idaho and southern Utah. Students should be prepared and comfortable with working and studying in all weather, including rain, wind, and heat. They should be physically fit and able to hike in mountainous terrain. In addition, all students will need to be physically able to work, study and hike at 6000 feet above sea level for an extended time. Students will be living with the sheikh of Zawiya Ahansal and his family and should therefore be comfortable with and respectful of Muslim culture. Meals are prepared by your host family and are traditional Berber Moroccan cuisine. Sleeping rooms will be shared amongst students and are gender separated.

IN THE FIELD TRAINING

5 days of the training will be spent on an overnight camping excursion into the high grazing grounds of Morocco's largest nomadic tribe, the Ait Atta. Participants will see centuries' old remote living at its most basic and see the nomads on their annual migration from the Sahara Desert into the High Atlas Mountains in search of water for their camels, goats and sheep. The Ait Atta live a life without medical care in some of the harshest conditions in North Africa. The rest of the training will take place in the village of Amezray at the the headquarters of Association Amezray SMNID.

SERVICE PROJECT

Participants will spend one day of the program working with the Atlas Cultural Foundation and the local association Amezray SMNID on a community service project.

PROGRAM HIGHLIGHTS

• Live with the sheikh, tribal leader, of Zawiya Ahansal and his family.
• See the Ait Atta nomads on their annual migration to high pasture.
• In depth lessons on snakes and scorpions.
• Visit the weekly market in the village of Aguddim.
• 5-day Trek up to 12,000 feet

THIS COURSE IS PERFECT FOR

• Students interested in learning about backcountry, expeditionary, and travel medicine.
• Outdoor professionals or enthusiasts who want to travel or work in remote and dynamic environments.
• Students looking to gain experience in patient care in the developing world, where medical care is limited.
• Explorers looking to discover vibrant and culturally rich Morocco.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

http://www.montana.edu/international/studyabroad/summer_programs/morocco.htm
Application Deadline: September 1, 2014

Course Cost:

Price: TBD

Included in Cost:

Airport transfer on arrival and departure
Private 4x4 transportation to and from Marrakesh to mountains
Hotel in Marrakesh on arrival and departure (2 nights total).
Food and Lodging in Zawiya Ahansal
11 nights, 10 days. Includes breakfast, lunch, and dinner, shared sleeping rooms (gender separated), and shared shower and bathroom facilities, and treated drinking water.
3-day Atlas Mountain Trek
Includes breakfast, lunch, and dinner, two-person tents (gender separated) and treated drinking water.

 

Not included:

Food and water in Marrakesh
Airfare
Personal Items
Communications

Course Details:

The course is for English speakers, there will not be a translator.
2 Montana University Credits are available to participants.
Financial aid can be used for the course.
15 nights, 16 days.
8 days of class time.
1 community service day with the Atlas Cultural Foundation and the Association Amezray SMNID.
3-day Atlas Mountain Trek.

How to Register

You can download and mail in our registration form, call our office (406.542.9972), email us, or visit our office at 100 North Ave. West, Missoula, Montana, 59801. (Find us on Google Maps).

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