People Helped in 2018: 78,661
Though Madagascar’s economy benefits from ecotourism, ecological research, and a growing agricultural sector, the unequal distribution of wealth has left nearly 80 percent of the country’s population living on less than two dollars a day. This widespread poverty, combined with weak government agencies and a tenuous political situation, has led to an alarming humanitarian situation. The last political crisis in 2009 to 2013 has had very negative impacts on the economy and health systems. More than half of all children in Madagascar suffer from chronic malnutrition, and over half of the country’s population struggles with food insecurity.
Between 1980 and 2010, the country suffered 35 cyclones and floods, five periods of severe drought, five earthquakes and six epidemics. This vulnerability has been intensified by increased migration to large cities, deteriorating road infrastructure and very poor security conditions. Some villages have exceeded the emergency threshold for global acute malnutrition (10 percent) established by the World Health Organization and, nationally, the country has one of the highest rates of chronic malnutrition in the world at 47 percent.
At the beginning of 2018, the Ava and Dumazille cyclones caused flooding on the country's eastern coast. In the Great South, rainfall deficit severely affected production: at least 80% of the population experienced a drop in production in 2017-2018. In addition, the population faces new outbreaks of plague and a measles epidemic.
In 2018, we prevented and treated malnutrition, in a center located in Antananarivo, where we also provided psychosocial support. In response to the prolonged drought in the Great South, we launched a multi-sectoral program to manage cases of undernutrition and improve access to water, sanitation and hygiene. We strengthened food security by offering support to women’s market garden activities. Our mobile teams were deployed to reach the most inaccessible areas.
In the Atsimo Andrefana region, we launched a new multi-year program to improve nutrition security through sustainable multi-sectoral methods, including analysing the causes of undernutrition and the scaling up of health system strengthening activities.