NEWS FLASH: SEPALIM’s EXTREME team to be interviewed on CNN. Showtime is Saturday, 18 May, 2013, 11:30 AM PST and 2:30 PM EST. Over the past 6 months CPALI/SEPALIM has been partnering with a team of Stanford students to improve our project and in particular textile production efficiency. We don’t know for SURE, but the team was interviewed and we think that they will be featured on CNN’s “What’s Next”. The program is focused on the Stanford course, “Design for Extreme Affordability” taught by Jim Patel and that we have been privileged to participate in. We hope that you will tune in – it’s a great course and great program (for a sneak peak: http://whatsnext.blogs.cnn.com/2013/05/14/addressing-tough-poverty-problems-with-innovation-and-design).
News from the field: Mamy Ratsimbazafy continues to lead the team in building up the soils at our new training site but harvesting truckloads of the invasive plant, water hyacinth. It is a huge effort but we are hoping other farmers in the area will follow our lead and improve their fields. Farmers are continuing to deposit cocoons in the bank and building up “savings”.
Maminirina Randrianandrasana has just completed a survey of insects eaten in the Makira area as we get ready to introduce caterpillar pupae as an alternative source of protein. As a first step we are comparing the nutritional value of different species as well as the effect of host plant on the nutritional value of Antherina suraka. Lalaina Raharindimby, the head of our women’s training program, has figured out how to roast the pupae so that they can be ground and their nutritional value analyzed. We hope to generate enough funds to allow these analyses while we pick the next silkworms that will be used for silk production. Our goal is to enable our farmer to earn cash and increase their protein intake.
We are sad to say good-bye to our fabulous Peace Corp volunteer Kerry O’Neill. Kerry has been a delight to work with and formed many fast friendships in the community and with the farmers allowing SEPALIM to continue to extend its Social Capital approaches to conservation. She has been a critical force and developing new partnerships in Mahalevena where new farmers have already planted trees and produced silkworms. Kerry, we thank you and will miss you greatly.
Market news We are thrilled to announce that CPALI/SEPALIM’s textiles are now advertised and available not only to designers through Source4Style’s website (www.source4style.com) but also to retail buyers at Habu Textile in New York (and soon, Tokyo; www.habutextile.com)! It is wonderful to be working with two such environmentally conscious and effective companies.
Let the adventure continue!!
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