Ambassador Morocco and Mayor Arnhem proud of international student team HAN4L
The international student team HAN4L is participating for 10 days in a humanitarian student rally with classic Renaults 4Ls whose finishing point is Marrakesh. Arnhem mayor Ahmed Marcouch is particularly proud of this student project. Full of enthusiasm, he also told Moroccan ambassador Mohamed Basri about it. He wanted to see it! Together they came to a HAN Engineering and Automotive lab in Arnhem on Friday afternoon 10 February to wave off the student team and wish them good luck!
Amid great interest from the Moroccan delegation, sponsors, family, friends, teachers and students, the 2 Renaults HAN4L and the chosen teams were presented. They will take part in the Humanitarian 4L Trophy, which starts in Biarritz, France, on 16 February and ends in the Moroccan city of Marrakesh on 26 February. On Sunday morning, 12 February, the team will leave Arnhem to be in Paris, the first stop, on time.
The unveiling event also featured a slick retrospective of the past editions of the rally. Furthermore, a nice and realistic future vision for this student project was outlined, even in collaboration with students from HAN MORE (Modular Research Vehicle).
Helping underprivileged children
Refurbishing old Renault4Ls at the HAN Automotive Engineering course is one important aspect. The annual 4L Trophy is another. And travelling across Morocco from Tangier to the desert in Marzouga with more than a thousand international students is entirely a boyhood dream!
Wonderful, but why exactly is Mayor Marcouch supporting this student team with warm interest?
Mayor Marcouch thinks it is visibly wonderful that there is also a social aspect to this multi-year student project. Namely, helping underprivileged children in sparsely populated regions of Morocco by providing educational supplies and other much-needed items. With this project in mind, Marcouch is also keen to build a bridge between the Netherlands and Morocco, where deepening knowledge of each other's society, culture and language can be boosted.
"The passage to adulthood takes shape in this trip. With 2 old Renaults 4, the students will go across Morocco in 5 stages up to Marzouga, overcoming the stones, wadis and dunettes, arriving in Marrakech. This one will not only be gripping, but also bring a great insight to the students: empathy", Marcouch says.
"I imagine these boys will spend the next few weeks experiencing how beautiful Morocco is and getting to know the locals with wonder. Because along the way, they will bring school supplies, food and toys to isolated Moroccan children in the province of Errachidia - also on behalf of 'Enfants du Désert' and the French Red Cross. This way, the students also see how these children live and grow up in the Moroccan Atlas and in the desert. Who knows, the students may come to understand how they can help each other and the children."
According to the mayor, entire genres are dedicated to this impressive form of coming of age. "Yes, that is the coming of age," he said.
Whether the mayor himself has ever experienced such a trek through the desert? "Well, only on a camel. But my coming of age has been life-sized in my 10-year-old childhood soul since my plane from rural Morocco first landed at brightly lit Schiphol Airport. Indeed, this time machine was live changing."
Both the mayor and the ambassador wished the HAN4L student delegation a beautiful and instructive trip. "Come home as young men with bigger hearts and good stories. Have a good trip! Trik Slama!"
Thanks to sponsor V-Tron, the team is able to show where HAN4L's Renauls are just before, during the rally and afterwards (from Sunday 12 February to Saturday 4 March), totalling almost 8,000 kilometres!
- You can also follow the team on their instagram account @HAN4L
Mayor Marcouch also came to watch the HAN4L team's achievements on 19 January. It even led to a news item on TV Gelderland.