A dedicated micro credit fund for rural Madagascar

by Zahana
A dedicated micro credit fund for rural Madagascar
A dedicated micro credit fund for rural Madagascar
A dedicated micro credit fund for rural Madagascar
A dedicated micro credit fund for rural Madagascar
A dedicated micro credit fund for rural Madagascar
A dedicated micro credit fund for rural Madagascar
A dedicated micro credit fund for rural Madagascar
A dedicated micro credit fund for rural Madagascar
A dedicated micro credit fund for rural Madagascar
A dedicated micro credit fund for rural Madagascar
A dedicated micro credit fund for rural Madagascar
A dedicated micro credit fund for rural Madagascar
A dedicated micro credit fund for rural Madagascar
A dedicated micro credit fund for rural Madagascar
A dedicated micro credit fund for rural Madagascar
A dedicated micro credit fund for rural Madagascar
A dedicated micro credit fund for rural Madagascar
A dedicated micro credit fund for rural Madagascar
A dedicated micro credit fund for rural Madagascar
A dedicated micro credit fund for rural Madagascar
A dedicated micro credit fund for rural Madagascar
A dedicated micro credit fund for rural Madagascar
Two and single burner improved cookstove models
Two and single burner improved cookstove models

One of our younger team members is quitecomputer savyy. We had asked him to focus on his next site visit on any impact of the improved cookstoves he might notice. His report features a cell photo with the tagline: “Mr Daha and his wife make cookstoves for sale”. Their skill as cookstove makers is well known in their own and surrounding villages. The team agrees that they have invented one of the most innovative and spiffy looking improved cookstoves. It is also considered one the best.

Their improved cookstoves are only made to order, or on demand on a one-to-one basis. Depending on the client’s needs they can offer three models: small, medium and large. The large version features a two-burner or twin cookstive model in the photo. Translating the prices for improved cookstoves into a dollar amount creates a challenge without cultural context. As a bench mark: the smallest improved cookstoves cost about a one day’s wage of a day laborer.

Besides being really good at it, selling improved cookstoves gives them access to much needed cash in the ‘époque dure’ the ‘hards times’. ‘Époque dure’ is the time before planting the new rice crop again when all the cash from last year’s harvest is long spent and consequently many rice farmers go hungry.

Our cookstove workshops had a great side effect, or talk about great unexpected consequences. They were very proud to report that they bought a piglet by their own money form the improved cookstoves, without having to rely on Zahana’s microcredit to pay for it. (See the other reports about our microcredit project to raise pigs)

PS: Our YouTube movie Combining reforestation with locally made improved cook stoves in Madagascar got a very fortunated boost in viewership in the last month! Check it out and please leave a comment if you feel so compelled. It helps us with our Youtube ranking. Thank you.

Mr Daha and his wife make cookstoves for sale
Mr Daha and his wife make cookstoves for sale
Improved cookstove to the left, traditional right
Improved cookstove to the left, traditional right

Links:

Share on Twitter Share on Facebook
Yellow cookie bags waiting for the kids
Yellow cookie bags waiting for the kids

The happy occasion is a big day: A few days ago, Santa visited the villages in Madagascar with gifts. Christmas is the big day children at our school await all year in great anticipation. This one special day they get their very own package of cookies (see photos.) Our team said: “just seeing excitement in their eyes as their faces light up, makes you happy to be part of it.”

In addition, they also got new clothes, something that has become a Christmas tradition by now as well. Another beautiful tradition is that Dr. Ihanta’s colleagues had been collecting clothes for Santa’s visit in the village all year long for quite a few years now. Despite the pandemic and they now being her former colleagues, they have been keeping up this tradition after she retired and many of the clothes you see on the gift table are from them.

Thank you for your support that makes out work in rural Madagascar possible.

Happy New Year




More cookies and clothing
More cookies and clothing
Getting ready
Getting ready
Share on Twitter Share on Facebook
Rice - the most important meal in Madagascar
Rice - the most important meal in Madagascar

Rice is the most important food in Malagasy culture. See website. When we received the pictures in this report they came with a comment: “children eating rice“. It gave us a really good laugh, because it is basically the only thing that is blatantly obvious in the photos.

But there is more to the story. The tagline should have been: children eating our rice as their school meal. In our befoe last microcredit report (see website) we talked about distributing our Zahana rice to our schools. It is our one ton from Fiarenana’s rice bank. This is why the students are eating our rice. Much to their delight they are now eating rice twice a week and mofo gasy, the rice cakes, the other three.

A happy student is a good student. And the student who gets rice instead of sitting in the classroom hungry all day is a happy student.

Eating rice inside the classroom
Eating rice inside the classroom

Links:

Share on Twitter Share on Facebook
The garden next to the twins house - the nicest
The garden next to the twins house - the nicest

“The spirit of a family garden in Fiadanana came back” was the comment of our founder Dr. Ihanta, when she forwarded the photos in this report we got from Fiadanana a few days ago. Some reports don’t fit in one slot, so we will cross-post this one in all of our projects. It is at the same time a bird’s eye view at the question: does our work have a lasting impact?

Sometimes you might just have to wait a decade to find out if it works, until people come around. Really?
 
Yes, really. Here is why:

In 2013 people planted vegetable gardens next to the houses in Fiadanana, our first village. (See website.) We originally thought it is kind of a no-brainer to have a garden right next to your kitchen, that supplies you with fresh vegetables as close to your cooking pot as possible. Dr. Ihanta had bought little vegetable seed packages and Bary our new gardener distributed them among the people interested. It worked really well and the vegetables grew happily all over the village. But then the idea fell asleep and for reasons unclear to us, people stopped growing vegetables next to their houses. It might have been connected to the cultural fact that rice farmers think only rice and corn, are ‘real’ crops a ‘real’ farmer grows, and vegetables are for ‘others’ that cannot grow rice. It might be a myriad of other reasons that will remain a mystery. Years went by.

Now in Fall of 2021 the vegetable gardens are back!  And they look better than ever before.

We were wondering if there might be a correlation between the huge and beautiful school gardens, thanks to Donné, that blossomed during the pandemic lockdown. Or could it be Donné’s persistent teaching by example planting and introducing new crops? People always thought onions and carrots don’t grow there. Donné put it to the test. Now everybody can see and knows: onions and carrots grow very well, after his bumper crop in our school garden.  

In October we made a staff adjustment. The midwife’s husband is very innovative and outside-the-box thinker. He would fit in well with a poetry reading in a smoky basement café in Paris. Before the pandemic, he was part of our teacher’s team in our school in Fiadanana. But the pandemic, with the school shutdown, helped him realize that teaching primary school is not his forte or calling. He is very passionate about sports and the soccer clubs he coaches. As staff, he also participated in all trainings conducted in his village, is a quick study and knows all of our projects well. Making your own charcoal, testing our new charcoal maker gizmos or researching new sources for carbon comes natural to him. In November 2021, we made him, loosely translated, a ‘controller’ or ‘independent evaluator’. In addition to being in charge of sports at the school, he now has a new role and position. He reports directly to Dr. Ihanta and not our local team leader. Solar energy to power the phones and computer at the CARMMA (the maternity clinic) makes this communication possible.

A skillful people’s person, his task is to visit all ten villages we work in and assess what is going on. On his agenda are questions like: do they indeed use improved cookstoves or make their own bio-charcoal?. And if not, try to figure out what is needed to improve the situation. It is a great plus that his family is the proud owner of a motorbike and he is very mobile.

The pictures of the gardens are from him as one of his first official assessments. Much to our delight, he had asked people why they started gardens. He reports, the most beautiful of all is run by a set of twins and their mother. Both twins have been students in our school. The other people he asked all have children who are currently attending our school. Another garden is from the president of the parents association.

It is our hope that teaching the children to garden in school, might in turn help them inspire their parents ‘back home’ to implement what they learned. Or implement it when they themselves grow up and become parents. This idea seems to bear fruit (or vegetables in this case.) We are happy the spirit of a family garden in Fiadanana came back. Welcome and we hope you stay for good!

Monthly donor drive – 12/17 Last day for a 200% match of your monthly amount

Thank you to all of Zahana’s current monthly donors!

This is a reminder: GlobalGiving’s monthly donor drive from Dec 13 to 17 is still on. In case the drive is over when you read this email we are grateful for any donation, monthly or in a lump sum you may consider for Zahana.

Every monthly donation pledged in this week will be matched 200% in April 2022. This means you donate for 12 months, but Zahana actually get 14 months out of the year 2022.  How sweet is this candy cane, buy 12 get 14?*

Monthly donors, people who give a small amount every month, have become the backbone of our work in Madagascar. It gives us a reliable source of donations every month. It allows us to plan or budget for ongoing expenses e.g. salaries for our teachers and gardeners.  

Monthly donations free us from the stress of having to raise our budget for 2022 in the month of December. Traditionally, in the USA over 80% of donations are made in December. Just imagine: you might get one big paycheck in December and had to make it last all year long. Plus, you don’t really know what this paycheck may look like until Dec 31, the big day for end-of-the-year donations. Plus, if some other emergency (or a pandemic) gets all the attention in December, we at Zahana might just fall through the proverbial cracks.

Please consider, if you are able to donate, becoming a monthly donor for Zahana from Dec 13 to 17. Thank you.

If you prefer a single one-time amount we are of course grateful as well if you consider Zahana in Madagascar.

*Monthly donations are capped at $200 per month, and have to be actually made for 4 months to qualify, to avoid shenanigans

Her home garden
Her home garden
Another home garden
Another home garden
Watering their home garden
Watering their home garden
Growing very well
Growing very well

Links:

Share on Twitter Share on Facebook
Sewing a dress for the holiday celebration
Sewing a dress for the holiday celebration

Earlier this year, in (see project report from April 2021) we reported about the Sewing Machine Project in our third village. We had bought two hand crank sewing machines and offered a sewing workshop to teach basic dressmaking by our founder Dr. Ihanta, who is also an accomplished seamstress. The proof is in the clothing. In the group photo of this report, you see them proudly showing off the clothing they had made for themselves and the community.

Here is a report: “We are happy to see that the ladies do their best. The women who got to participate in the training on sewing are using their new skills to make some money now. The sewing room is all the time busy in the afternoon, as they work in the field in the morning, since before dawn. They asked for more training to improve their knowledge but the more time they practice the more they will see by themselves how to improve their skills. They not only sew cloths for themselves (saving quite a bit of money this way), but they also take orders from others in their community who don’t have time to either sew or did not take the workshop and don’t have the skills to make their own clothing. Right now they are busy sewing their Christmas dresses and clothes for the upcoming celebrations. It is kind of safe to assume that they will be the best dressed villagers in any Christmas celebration in the area.”

Monthly donors - the sweet smell of holiday candy

Thank you to all of Zahana’s current monthly donors!

Here is a sweet deal: GlobalGiving’s monthly donor drive from Dec 13 to 17.

Every monthly donation pledged in this week will be matched 200% in April 2022. This means you donate for 12 months, but Zahana actually get 14 months out of the year 2022.  How sweet is this candy cane, buy 12 get 14?*

Monthly donors, people who give a small amount every month, have become the backbone of our work in Madagascar. It gives us a reliable source of donations every month. It allows us to plan or budget for ongoing expenses such as salaries for our teachers and gardeners.  

Monthly donations frees us from the stress of having to raise our budget for 2022 in the month of December. Traditionally, in the USA over 80% of donations are made in December. Just imagine: you might get one big paycheck in December and have to make it last all year long. Plus, you don’t really know what this paycheck may look like until Dec 31, the big tax-day for end-of-the-year donations. Plus, if some other emergency (or a pandemic) gets all the attention in December, we at Zahana might just fall through the proverbial cracks.

Please consider becoming a monthly donor for Zahana from Dec 13 to 17. Thank you.

*Monthly donations are capped at $200 per month, and have to be actually made for 4 months to qualify, to avoid shenanigans

Sharing the two sewing machine amongst the women
Sharing the two sewing machine amongst the women
Fashion show in rural Madagascar
Fashion show in rural Madagascar
The sewing group displaying their skills
The sewing group displaying their skills

Links:

Share on Twitter Share on Facebook
 

About Project Reports

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.

Get Reports via Email

We'll only email you new reports and updates about this project.

Organization Information

Zahana

Location: Antananarivo, Capital - Madagascar
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @zahana
Project Leader:
Markus Faigle
Volunteer
Honolulu, HI United States
$34,480 raised of $45,000 goal
 
274 donations
$10,520 to go
Donate Now
lock
Donating through GlobalGiving is safe, secure, and easy with many payment options to choose from. View other ways to donate

Zahana has earned this recognition on GlobalGiving:

Help raise money!

Support this important cause by creating a personalized fundraising page.

Start a Fundraiser

Learn more about GlobalGiving

Teenage Science Students
Vetting +
Due Diligence

Snorkeler
Our
Impact

Woman Holding a Gift Card
Give
Gift Cards

Young Girl with a Bicycle
GlobalGiving
Guarantee

Sign up for the GlobalGiving Newsletter

WARNING: Javascript is currently disabled or is not available in your browser. GlobalGiving makes extensive use of Javascript and will not function properly with Javascript disabled. Please enable Javascript and refresh this page.