Late in 2018 FANC and our Finnish-Malagasy Manondroala 2 team got information that we have received funding for 4 years from Ministry for Foreign Affairs in Finland to start our new project Manondroala 2 – Empowering co-operation of government and civil society in forest protection in Madagascar. Now we would like to share what have we been doing during the first months of this new project!
First months of 2019 we were busy making work contracts, drafts of partnership agreements, tentative timetables, budgets and other essential steps to start a new project. Tasks were shared and final team of Manondroala 2 was decided: In Finland, Laura Blomberg works as an international coordinator and restoration specialist, and Olli Turunen as techical expert in forest mapping and monitoring. In Madagascar we have 3 members of staff that working in project: Angela Tarimy is our national coordinator and trainer. Daulphin Razafipahatelo is our GIS-expert and Haingotiana Ramiarinjanahary helps us occassionally for example when visiting our local partner in Andasibe.
The Finnish Manondroala 2 team visited Madagascar in April-May and we met many future and prospective partners.
First, Laura and Angela met Association Mitsinjo’s staff to discuss and plan future co-operation. Mitsinjo has been for long time FANC’s partner in other projects, and in this project Mitsinjo will share information of best restoration practises and attend in expertise exchange (please see the previous blog for more details).
In the beginning of May, there was a visit to University of Antananarivo’s IOGA and Ministry of DD. During these visits we told about the new funding and future plans.
When Olli joined our team early May in Madagascar, we drove to Mahajanga. Journey was long, occasionally dusty and super hot, but definitely worth it. On the way, we also collected some data about dry forests near western coastline.
In Mahajanga, the local team of Eden reforestation projects shared information about their amazing work near Mahajanga, showed us local reforestation sites and nursery. Please visit Eden’s website to read more about their objectives and work in Madagascar and other countries.
We also visited Katsepy where Eden returns forest cover into this unique area that we consider to have also great potential for tourism. The views from Katsepy’s lighthouse are stunning and offer great place to follow the changes in landscape and its vegetation. Forest fragments near lighthouse are also very good to spot some extremely endangered lemur species.
Later on the way back to Tana we stopped at Ankarafantsika to meet Eden’s local team which showed their work around Ankarafantsika National Park.
After these meetings, we must say that we were extremely impressed of the amazing work Eden is doing in Madagascar and without hesitation we can encourage anyone to support their work. Planning is still on-going but we are looking forward for all co-operation with this great organisation and its staff.
Opening seminar was held the 8th of May in Antananarivo, and Manondroala 2 team was delighted to host a large audience of future partners and local stakeholders from Ministere de l`Environnement et du Developpement Durable, IOGA of Université d’Antananarivo, Madascar National Parks, WCS Madagascar; MEDD and its Bureau national de coordination du changement climatique, du Carbone et de la REDD+; Ileiry Geospatial Services, NAP Antrema Katsepy, Eden Reforestation Projects, Association Mitsinjo and Transparent World.
The event was widely noticed by local media, for example 1) TV Record Madagascar broadcasted event at 7 p.m news the 8th of May and 2) Journal Madagascar published short news article at their website.
Manondroala 2 team would like to thank all participants one more time for great discussion and presentations. We are looking for future cooperation!
For latest news, please follow our blog, our facebook page (FANC Madagascar) and instagram (@fanc.madagascar). Any questions or cooperation enquiries, please contact Laura Blomberg, international coordinator of Manondroala 2 project, laura.blomberg(a)sll.fi or Angela Tarimy, national coordinator, angelatarimy(a)gmail.com
Dear Finnish followers, please consider to support our work for tropical forest conservation in Madagascar by sending a text 10 MADA to number 16588 (cost 10 euros).
Text and photos: Laura Blomberg