Conservation through Poverty Alleviation, Int

Conservation through Poverty Alleviation, International, a US-based 501(c)3 organization, helps subsistence farmers displaced by the formation of national parks establish new livelihoods that restore and sustain protected habitats.
Jun 13, 2012

Farmer cooperation pushes program forward

Sand soils before treatment
Sand soils before treatment

ELINOR OSTROM

We dedicate this newsletter to Elinor Ostrom (1933-2012) who received a Nobel Prize for her recognition of the cooperative ability of communities to increase their financial assets through the sustainable and cooperative management of their environment.  Her work is our inspiration.

CPALI/SEPALIM has worked hard to develop cooperative approaches that are paying off.  The first years of our work in Madagascar were dedicated to building trust among community members and our team,  and building farmer networks within and across communities.  We are now working in 14 villages and have registered 140 farmers. SEPALI Madagascar's latest newsletter records some of the results of our efforts: first cocoon deposits made by 9  farmers into our cocoon bank; 11 successful breeders;  6 m of non-spun textile made in record time by the Ambinanitelo women's group. 

Farmers are taking the initiative too.  Those that have planted trees but that do not have time to rear larvae are "renting" their trees and pupae to landless farmers in need of earning opportunities.  No money is exchanged between renter and worker but farmers share the proceeds from cocoon sales.  The farmers  are enabling all community members to participate in the SEPALIM program. 

DID YOU KNOW
DWELL on Design (http://dod.dwell.com/) contacted CPALI for a sample of our textile to display in their June design fair in Los Angeles. We are excited not only because DWELL is THE top contemporary home design company in the US but also because they will be introducing our textile to west coast designers.  If you live in the LA area, stop by and ask to see our textile! 

 

CHECK OUT OUR SOILS
We are proud to illustrate our soil improvement program. The team has been mulching soil in the demonstration site for  5 years and the result is over a foot of rich, topsoil that replaces the original black sand at the demonstration  site where Talandoha and food crops have been planted.  Improved garden soils are increasing garden productivity.
 
In October, Dr. Lydiah Gatare will set up a long term soil monitoring program in selected communities (with the help of the SEPALIM team) to quantify  the effects of silk moth host plants on farms.  We are grateful to Professors Drew Harvell and Christopher Barrett from Cornell's Atkinson Center for a Sustainable Future for funding to support this initiative. 

 

Fertile soils after treatment
Fertile soils after treatment

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May 29, 2012

CPALI wins TOP Innovation score from GG-UK!!!

Inter-cropped host plants on Marovovonana farm
Inter-cropped host plants on Marovovonana farm

 

What an exciting time for CPALI and SEPALI Madagascar!  We recieved the TOP SCORE in the GG-UK  Celebrating Innovation campaign AND a £500 bonus award!  We are honored, and would like to sincerely thank the distinguished, UK-GG panel of judges.  Here is Bob Weber's Award Winning essay:
"Breakfast comes before conservation", guides our enterprise-based approach to help farmers adversely affected by the formation of the Makira Protected Area in northeastern Madagascar. Drawing on our learnings in biology, ecology, sociology and marketing, we have introduced innovative practices for the sustainable production of wild silk: innovations that both improve the surrounding ecology and satisfy the demands of the subsistence farming that is the only reliable source of food in the remote villages that border the park. We attribute our success ( 50% compound growth in number of participants over the past 5 years) to our reliance on social capital, generated from mutual trust, local governance and from rewarding performance not just participation. Specific innovations include the use of farmer networks and the distribution of a monthly newsletter (in two languages) to disseminate best practices and triumphs, commissioning of locally produced baskets for collecting and rearing the caterpillars, implementation of farmer-suggested competitions, our “cocoon bank” that serves as a saving mechanism and, most recently, a farmer-suggested purchasing cooperative to moderate price fluctuations in school supplies. We guarantee a market for the wild silk and have devised innovative products and manufacturing techniques suited to the immediately available level of skill and infrastructure.
Other great news is that CPALI sold our next lot nonspun cloth to Habu Textiles (www.Habutextile.com) in New York.  If you haven't already, please visit their store in New York and see why we are so proud to be included in their stock. In addition, innovative rubber-band artist - yes, rubber band artist - Margarita Mileva, has made a smashing necklace with CPALI silk and rubber bands - check out our home page to view it up close (www.cpali.org) and google on Margarita Mileva to see her other creative pieces.
Finally, Mamy is finishing up his trip to the US this week.  I am sure he will be writing his own report, but in the meantime, he told me he met Hilary Clinton at the State Department and gave her a copy of the SEPALI Madagascar borchure!  He was thrilled and I am jealous - check out SEPALIM's new home page www.sepalim.org.
Bring on the rains in Madagascar and summer in the north!

Links:

Apr 26, 2012

Mamy reports on the SEED award ceremony

Dear GlobalGivers,

Things continue to progress in Madagascar.  Mamy has just returned from a trip to South Africa where he received an award from the SEED initiative, and initiative organized by UNEP, UNDP and IUCN to develop enterprise programs that support t\he environment and poverty alleviation.  It was a really valuable experience, not the least of which was that Mamy had a chance to "talk strategy" with other African project leaders whose projects were in about the same stage of development.

In addition to attending an awards ceremony in SA, Mamy's SEED adviser traveled to Maronatsetra to give two workshops.  The first workshop was for SEPALI farmers.  They discussed their needs, desires and goals for the program.  In the afternoon, the SEED adviser explained silk value chain for SEPALI giving farmers insight into the entire silk process from egg to market to profit returns.  I am sure that many of our farmers had never considered all the factors that have gone into the silk production process, into making a silk textile, and what it takes to get the products they are producing to market.  

The second day of the SEED event in Maroantsetra, a workshop was held for all of the Malagasy non-profits in the  area to discuss how they might work together. It seems to have helped the local NGO's outline plans for future collaborations and a promise to meet in 3 months.

I thought you might be interested in reading for yourselves what our farmers are thinking and attached Kerry's careful minutes of the first workshops.   Also attached is Mamy's trip report to SA and the brochure he made for that trip.

All the best,


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