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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