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Madagascar PHE Network newsletter featuring the latest updates from our members and network outreach officer! 
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The Madagascar PHE Network connects, inspires and supports practitioners, donors and policy makers to address Madagascar’s social and environmental challenges in a holistic way. 

Connecting networks: PHE at the Madagascar Locally Managed Marine Area forum

 
The largest ever meeting of traditional fishers in Madagascar was convened in October by the MIHARI network, putting local marine management on the national agenda! PHE network outreach officer Nantenaina Andriamalala attended the forum, highlighting the relevance of the PHE approach to MIHARI network members including marine conservation NGOs and Locally Managed Marine Area (LMMA) communities.  
The conference was held over five days with plenary discussions, workshops, field visits and training sessions. Nantenaina had the opportunity to connect with numerous MIHARI network members and learn about the various challenges they face in relation to local marine management. There was much interest in PHE at the forum, with MIHARI network coordinator Vatosoa Rakotondrazafy remarking:

"Linking the MIHARI network with the PHE network will help to improve the social status of coastal communities in terms of their access to family planning, their health and well-being, their food security and their capacity for sustainable fisheries management. Working in this holistic way can also help to ensure the proper use of mosquito nets not as fishing gears but to combat malaria, so the PHE approach can really support MIHARI network members in all spheres of their LMMA work." 

Madagascar's progress celebrated at a regional PHE conference in Kenya

Nantenaina and members of the Madagascar PHE Network attended a regional PHE conference in Kenya, convened in September by the Lake Victoria Basin Commission and the East African Community Secretariat. It brought together PHE implementers from Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi, Ethiopia and Madagascar as well as representatives of USAID, the Population Reference Bureau (PRB) and international NGOs to discuss PHE lessons learned for the new Sustainable Development agenda. 

Madagascar was heralded as a re-emerging PHE leader in the East Africa region by USAID representatives during the opening speeches, and Nantenaina presented progress achieved during the Madagascar PHE Network's first year. 
Caroline Savitzky of Blue Ventures presented its PHE partnerships with the Ministry of Public Health, Marie Stopes Madagascar, JSI/MAHEFA and Population Services International along the west coast of Madagascar. Maya Moore and Lauren Van Sicklin of the Madagascar Fauna and Flora Group (MFG) also attended the conference, and Maya commented afterwards:

"We met with many passionate people at the conference who are already working on PHE projects throughout East Africa. While the presentations we attended were very informative, it was the unofficial meetings that really made the difference. Getting to talk with people one-on-one and ask all those questions that had come up during our planning phase was invaluable! It's exciting to know that as our PHE work develops further, we have a great network to support us."

Health-environment partnerships continue to flourish

Azafady update: we've just secured funding from Comic Relief to complete a 6-month PHE consultation with rural communities and partners in the Mahatalaky commune in southeast Madagascar! This will allow us to develop collaborations and design a PHE programme that addresses unmet family planning needs by linking a variety of health service providers with local natural resource management committees, thereby integrating closely with our existing community-based forest and fishery management efforts in the region.
We'll focus initially on five village clusters, with the potential to scale up to additional communities in the future. This is an exciting new area for Azafady, and we're looking forward to taking this step to holistically address the multifaceted sustainable development challenges faced by rural communities in the Anosy region with the support of the PHE network.
Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) update: as part of our efforts to improve community health in the MaMaBaie (Makira, Masoala and Baie d'Antongil) terrestrial and marine conservation areas in the northeast of the country, our environmental education team partnered with Marie Stopes Madagascar to hold a training workshop for 14 community health agents in October. The links between family planning, school completion and sustainable natural resource management were discussed in order to support behaviour change communications with youth. We're proposing that Marie Stopes Madagascar will offer long-acting reversible contraceptives in the Maroantsetra district in the new year. 
WWF update: we're starting to collaborate with JSI/MAHEFA around Belo sur Tsiribihina in the Menabe region on Madagascar's west coast, supporting community health agents to integrate environmental messages into their outreach work and facilitating supply chains for health products to remote villages by boat as needed.
Visit phemadagascar.org for resources and more

Welcome to our new PHE network members!

PHE highlighted at a roundtable discussion about biodiversity conservation with President Rajaonarimampianina 

Blue Ventures' community health programmes coordinator Laura Robson represented the PHE network at a roundtable discussion with the President of Madagascar last month, which was convened in the UK by the Cambridge Conservation Initiative to discuss biodiversity conservation in Madagascar.
President Rajaonarimampianina emphasised the importance of placing local communities and sustainable development at the heart of biodiversity conservation efforts, and Laura highlighted how Madagascar PHE Network members are working at the interface of these issues: integrating reproductive health services with alternative livelihood and natural resource management initiatives, thereby contributing directly to the achievement of the new Global Goals for Sustainable Development while supporting biodiversity conservation in Madagascar. We look forward to strengthening the PHE network's collaboration with the Ministry of Public Health and the Ministry of Environment, Ecology, Sea and Forests following this meeting.

Looking ahead...


We will convene the next big Madagascar PHE Network gathering next year, with the exact format and content to be confirmed shortly in close consultation with all PHE network members. We also expect to organise site-based PHE learning exchanges over the coming year, which will enable further sharing of experiences and expertise among PHE network members.
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© Madagascar PHE Network | December 2015
Contact: nantenaina@phemadagascar.org
Address: c/o Blue Ventures, Omnibus Business Centre, 39-41 North Road, London, N7 9DP, UK


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