On one hand ideas reached our mind when we heard word « Madagascar », (DreamWorks, Sun, beaches, lemurs, Smiling people, poverty …) and on the other hand some may ignore where Madagascar is located. As an organization working on Madagascar, we would like to make brief introduction about this wonderful island.

It’s a great Island situated in the Indian Ocean off the southeastern coast of Africa. It is the 4th largest island after Greenland, New Guinea and Borneo, about 590 000 square km.

It was first sighted by Europeans (the Portuguese) in 1500, but apparently first inhabitant by Malaysian, Indonesian from Asia, afterwards Bantu migrants from East Africa and later Arabs. Those combinations make the infinite variety of the beauty of the Malagasy people in addition to smiles, courtesy and delight.

A tropical climate with rain falling in the hottest season, the wettest area in the east, the dry zone in the southwest , hot and humid in low-lying areas and fresh in the center part. Majority of plants and animals are only found in Madagascar. Even if the Christianity looks the dominant organized religion, the majorities of Malagasy people have their own unique form of ancestor worship and this influenced their lives.

Since 1980s, the economy suffered badly, Madagascar unfortunately is ranked as the poorest country of the world. With 75% of the population below the poverty and over 60% classified as extremely poor. 70 % of school-age population reaches the second primary year and only 35% finish primary school. The literacy rate is approximately 45%. Despite the politic turmoil and leader’s mismanagement, hopes of recovery are not fading away…

The Malagasy are well-known of their peaceful way of life called “moramora” and not usually worried about other people’s behavior or things that need to be done. Men, women and children all move freely and openly through the society and all make valuable and valued contributions defined by the word “Fihavanana”. If one day, you have an opportunity to travel to Madagascar, you will be bound to experience their kind and generous hospitality

Aina Madagascar