Morocco Earthquake: Fast Facts

The powerful earthquake that shook Morocco has taken lives and caused widespread damage. Get the facts about the devastating disaster and learn how you can help survivors through community-led relief efforts.


1. This was the strongest earthquake to hit Morocco in 120 years.

The 6.8 magnitude earthquake struck late Friday night near Ighil, Morocco, about 50 miles from the historic city of Marrakesh. Quakes of that magnitude are rare in the area, where ancient buildings made of stone were not designed to withstand the tremors.

The quake toppled homes, and residents fled into the streets in search of safety. Many residents have spent two nights outside, afraid to return home. People in Marrakesh, Casablanca, Rabat, Fez, and other cities felt the tremors, with at least 300,000 people affected near the epicenter. About 20 minutes after the first powerful earthquake, a 4.9 magnitude aftershock was recorded, and hundreds of aftershocks followed.
Source: The Washington Post + The Associated Press + CNN

Support community-led relief and recovery with a donation to GlobalGiving’s Morocco Earthquake Relief Fund.


2. The Morocco earthquake has killed more than 2,900 people—and the death toll is rising.

This is the deadliest earthquake to hit Morocco in more than 60 years. It has already become the third deadliest earthquake in North Africa since 1900. More than 5,500 people have been injured, and rescue workers are rushing to pull others from the rubble. In the worst-hit areas, debris is blocking roads and complicating rescue efforts and aid deliveries. In hard-to-reach communities in the Atlas Mountains, people received little to no official help. Without ambulances or medical care available, survivors were taken to hospitals in private vehicles or on motorcycles.
Source: CNN + The New York Times + ABC News

3. The quake damaged centuries-old historic sites.

The red walls surrounding the old city of Marrakesh, a UNESCO World Heritage site, were damaged in the quake. Some historic buildings in the medina district collapsed completely. Famous landmarks, including the 12th century Koutoubia Mosque in Marrakesh, and the beloved Tinmal Mosque in the High Atlas mountains also sustained damage.
Source: The Associated Press

Support community-led relief and recovery with a donation to GlobalGiving’s Morocco Earthquake Relief Fund.


4. GlobalGiving partners are already on the ground helping survivors access food, shelter, and other emergency services.

GlobalGiving’s Disaster Response Team is working with responding partners to meet the immediate needs of Morocco earthquake survivors and first responders. GlobalGiving partners, including Global Diversity Foundation, are already providing food, water, and shelter. Once urgent needs are met, the GlobalGiving Morocco Earthquake Relief Fund will transition to support community-led, long-term recovery efforts as needed.

“We are committed to providing immediate and long-term support to alleviate immense suffering and restore resilience of rural communities where we have worked for more than 10 years, including at Dar Taliba,” Global Diversity Foundation shared.

“Our hearts ache for our team and communities who have lost family and seen their homes reduced to rubble.”
Source: GlobalGiving Morocco Earthquake Relief Fund

5. Cash is the best way to help people in need during a disaster like the Morocco earthquake.

Why? Survivors’ needs vary greatly throughout the life cycle of recovery. Some will require financial support, medical care, and psychological assistance years down the road. You can learn more about the importance of cash donations in this infographic.
Source: GlobalGiving + USAID Center for International Disaster Information

Help communities hit hardest by the Morocco earthquake through GlobalGiving and fuel community-led relief and recovery.


Featured Photo: Mohammed Elhmatif and his sons, Rayan, right, and Ali, stand amidst the rubble of their home which was damaged by the earthquake, in Ijjoukak village, near Marrakesh, Morocco, Saturday, Sept. 9, 2023 by AP Photo/Mosa'ab Elshamy)

Note: This article was originally published on September 9, 2023 at 12:39 p.m. and last updated on September 12, 2023 at 9:51 a.m.

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