World Food Programme (WFP) and government join hands to transform rural communities in Madagascar
Under the Rapid Rural Transformation (RRT) initiative, WFP and partners establish solar-powered hubs, a sustainable water source and ICT in remote areas allowing for the provision of essential services such as energy, water, and digital platforms to members of the community, in an environmentally responsible and sustainable manner.
The hub, which is managed by regional authorities, allows various partners to set up integrated community services such as training centers for women and youth on food production and business skills, as well as digital classrooms, while enhancing agricultural production through solar-powered drip irrigation and hydroponics.
“With this pilot project, we will facilitate rural transformation even in geographically isolated areas, through the provision of clean water for irrigation, the operation of health care facilities, the expansion of entrepreneurial opportunities, and the development of their agricultural value chains,” Jocelyn Raharimbola, Governor of the Anosy region explains. “Following years of food insecurity, data on the ground shows an improvement in the nutritional situation thanks to emergency interventions and collaboration with agencies such as WFP.”
Madagascar is among the ten countries most vulnerable to disasters in the world and is considered the most cyclone-exposed country in Africa. The Androy and Anosy regions are at the sharp end of the climate crisis and have high rates of chronic malnutrition among children under five. The regions are adversely affected by extreme weather events such as cyclones, storms, and droughts.
The Rapid Rural Transformation (RRT) initiative combines two climate risk mitigation strategies to assist the people: better natural resource management through enhanced agricultural techniques to assure ongoing food production and diversifying their livelihoods to withstand climate shocks.
“The initiative is a game-changer,” says Pasqualina di Sirio, WFP’s Country Director in Madagascar. “Working with the government, the integrated services approach helps us to stimulate grassroots development, while addressing rural communities’ most pressing needs. Our plan is to expand the initiative to other villages and regions.”
Approximately 2.2 million people in the southern and south-eastern regions of Madagascar are experiencing high levels of food insecurity (IPC 3 and 4) during the pre-harvest period until April 2023. WFP works with government and partners to build effective crisis response, social protection, malnutrition prevention and resilient livelihood systems through innovative actions and approaches in the south, where the population remains highly vulnerable.
Distributed by APO Group on behalf of World Food Programme (WFP).