Supporting Families Struggling with Hunger
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SOS Villages d’Enfants Monde mobilises to respond to the crisis
Fields are bare in Madagascar’s deep south as the region suffers its fourth consecutive year without rain. It is the worst drought in 40 years and hundreds of thousands of families are going hungry.
Most people in the south of Madagascar make their living from small-scale agriculture and livestock. The combination of successive crop failures, drought and the Covid-19 pandemic has tripled or quadrupled the price of food on the local market, forcing people to sell their livestock and possessions to buy food.
In order to address this reality, an emergency response was put in place in the districts of Tsihombe, Ambovombe, Beloha and Bekily.
A documentary on our actions in Madagascar
Assessment of the first phase of the project
Period : October 2021 – April 2022
Starting in the autumn of 2021, the SOS Madagascar emergency intervention initially targeted 670 families (more than 3,800 people) to help them overcome food insecurity and strengthen their resilience. Particular attention was paid to the youngest children. The project was deployed in 4 districts of the Androy region in the Grand Sud, which experienced a 4th consecutive year without rain. More than 330 families, most of them led by women, received financial support to feed themselves. 405 children under the age of 5, suffering from malnutrition, were cared for and monitored over 84 days. 1,630 members of the targeted families participated for 22 days in community work (cleaning, rehabilitation of tracks, development of ponds, etc.) in exchange for payment in order to meet their urgent needs. Finally, a plantation of a thousand trees should improve soil fertility and provide shade. Faced with the major crises that are multiplying in this country, which is one of the most exposed to climate change and where the number of displaced persons is increasing, our association remains mobilised for the families. Weakened by two years of crisis in Covid-19, Madagascar is likely to suffer the full force of the repercussions of the war in Ukraine, particularly the global food crisis that is taking shape and the economic impacts that are already being felt.
Phase 2: Building the resilience of the most vulnerable populations, especially women and children
The impoverishment of families, exacerbated by droughts, puts women and children at greater risk of abuse. Despite the region’s varied natural and mineral resources, over 90% of rural households live below the poverty line.
After having financed in 2020 the installation of solar panels as part of the setting up of an eco-village within the SOS Children’s Village of Vontovorona, our association is involved from October 2021 to April 2022 in an emergency aid project, piloted by its sister association SOS Children’s Villages Madagascar (present in the country since 1989), in response to the drought and famine in the Great South. Following this intervention, we are now involved in a new project, called Fagnavotsy*, which focuses on strengthening the resilience of the most vulnerable populations, especially women and children. It focuses on access to education, strengthening livelihoods, access to water and combating desertification. It is being deployed in the Androy region where it targets some 1,550 children and adults.
*Antandroy word meaning “to help”.
The four main axes of this new intervention are:
- Access to water for the community members of Tanandava and Sakamasy through the rehabilitation or construction of a drinking water supply system
- Access to basic education for children in the Tanandava fokontany through the construction or rehabilitation of two classrooms in the public school and a school monitoring room for the family strengthening programme centre. This reconstruction work will lead to the establishment of paid activities to enable the population to meet its needs during the lean season.
- Improving the livelihoods of young people from the Androy region through vocational training in promising sectors.
- Mitigation of desertification through awareness-raising activities for community members on environmental issues and the planting of hundreds of trees in the communes of Tanandava and Sakamasy.
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