Dear friends,We are happy and proud to announce that for August 2011 Zahana is featured in the ‘Project of the Month Club’ at GlobalGiving. Every month GlobalGiving awards this designation to a new exceptionally high performing project. For August our ‘Solar cookers for the school in Fiadanana’ takes the spotlight on the GlobalGiving website. We are thankful to GlobalGiving for this great opportunity to reach a wider audience of dedicated donors for Zahana. Please check it out and let all your friends know.
Ihanta, Jeannette and Markus
In early 2010 Zahana introduced Moringa oleifera seeds in both villages. Everything of this beneficial fast growing three can be used. The leaves, high in protein, can be cooked as vegetables. Powdered Moringa leaves have been successfully used in West Africa for decades in infant formulas. The entire seedpods can eaten like beans at a young stage, or bigger and more mature added to soups, as what in know in Indian cuisine as ‘drumsticks’. The ripe seeds can be replanted or used to extract high quality oil. Fast growing, the trees need to be cut constantly to easily reach the leaves, providing much needed sustainable wood for cooking. The pictures included in this report show how Moringa has successfully taken root in both, Fiadanana and Fiarenana, over the past year. The trees now growing in the schoolyards of both schools were planted with the students as part of our school garden curriculum. Zahana’s microcredit approach is to hire our two gardeners and pay them for their work year round. This lesson was learned when the original idea of providing the gardeners with seeds and have them sell their seedlings as and income generating project proved not to be feasible. The economic insecurity of this approach was not feasible for our gardeners. Economic security thought a stable income empowers our gardeners to experiment with new crops, to see if something can be grown in their climate successfully, and provides the fruit of their labor for free to their communities. The gardeners have become outstanding teachers, successfully involving students in our school garden project, second to none in the area.
We could not have done it without your support! The temptation was big to just send a progress report with two words: “Thank you”. But, we wanted to explain it a bit more: February 2011 Zahana was awarded “Superstar” status, the highest level an organization can reach on GlobalGiving! Regular progress report by our amazing Malagasy team, combined with your donor support got us among the 30 superstars, a brand new program launched at GlobalGiving. Last but not least: March 16 - Bonus Day at GlobalGiving:On March 16, 2011 GlobalGiving is matching at 30% all online donations (up to US$1,000 per donor per project) with $75,000 available in matching funds. The last time matching funds were depleted half way into the Bonus Day, so be ready midnight EST on March 16 if you would like to top off your generous donation to Zahana.Thank you.Ihanta, Jeannette and MarkusP.S. Zahana did not get chosen for the Ford Focus test drive in February 2011.
Thanks to GlobalGiving’s endorsement Zahana is entitled to compete for the $10,000 prize money in the Ford Focus Global Test Drive. Another creative fundraising strategy to explore, we just submitted a video. Now we hope to get chosen with your help. If you are on Facebook and would like to support us, the steps are:Please watch the video “Changing lives in Madagascar” click on “love it” in the bottom and encourage all your friends to do the same. If we get enough “love its” we are in and get the $10,000. We only have until Dec 31, so procrastination is not an option anymore. (If this does not work just send me an email at email@example.com and I forward you the URL by email.) Not on Facebook? Ask somebody who is and most lilely spends more time on it that you wished for...
And while you are on Facebook why not “like” Zahana’s Facebook page as well? We are in the process of redesigning our own website www.zahana.org, to make it (hopefully) easier to navigate. Please visit if you get a chance and let us know what you think of the new look.Last but not least with the end of the (tax) year near, we hope you might consider Zahana in your giving as well. You may do so on-line from the links in this update, or you can as always send a good old check in the postal mail to Zahana (see website for details)
For the last minute virtual gift you could always download a Zahana Thank you card and make a donation in somebody elses’ name.Happy Holidays,Ihanta, Jeannette and Markus
Dear Friends of Zahana: This is a reminder: Thursday, December 16 is Bonus Day at GlobalGiving. Every donation is matched by 50% until they run out of matching funds. Last time GlobalGiving ran out of matching funds for the first time, so please donate early, if you can. We apologize in case you get this progress report from another GlobalGiving project. This issue is overarching and posted on all three. The latest Zahana report (Nov. 2010) illustrates our definition of “success” quite drastically: Background: In 2006 the community of Fiadanana built their own water system with help from Zahana. Zahana hired the water experts, who living in the village for two months, taught the villagers how to lay pipe from a ground well in the mountains over a mile away. Seven communal faucets provide clean, safe water to everybody all year round all over the village ever since.Report from Ihanta in Madagascar: “In Fiadanana where they got safe drinking water in 2006 through seven communal faucets, the impact is tremendous. A key reason why we found teachers willing to move to the village of Fiadanana was the availability of clean safe drinking water. It is the only village in the area that can make such a claim.Mparany, our Zahana teacher, reported that since he has been living in Fiadanana, no child’s death was reported. The only death in the village was a woman who had surgery in the hospital of Tsiroanomandidy for appendicitis some 2 months ago. Berthine, a member of the women’s group, confirmed that before Zahana in the “hard times period” (époque dure) between the harvests from October to December, it felt like almost every day one child passed away from diarrhea. (She said 26 deaths in 2 months.) She explained that people from Fiadanana now have to carry their water with them if they have to go to another village, since their stomachs don’t feel well drinking the water from the other villages.” (More in our November Newsletter.)It is Zahana’s guiding development philosophy to make life in the villages so livable and attractive that it is worth staying there with your family working the land. A lot of development problems connected with urbanization and sprawling slums attracting impoverished farmers can be avoided if people are not forced to leave for the cities in an often futile search for a better life.As you might plan your end of the year giving, we hope that you will remember Zahana (even if you missed “bonus day”). We have ready-to-use Zahana gift cards you can download off our Zahana website as a do-it-yourself project if you want to add a personal touch. Happy Holidays and thanks for your continued supportIhanta, Jeannette and Markus
Project Reports on GlobalGiving are posted directly to globalgiving.org by Project Leaders as they are completed, generally every 3-4 months. To protect the integrity of these documents, GlobalGiving does not alter them; therefore you may find some language or formatting issues.
If you donate to this project or have donated to this project, you will get an e-mail when this project posts a report. You can also subscribe for reports via e-mail without donating or by subscribing to this project's RSS feed.