Conclusion of Mandritsara Tree Nursery Project – Madagascar

This project has been completed under the direction of Peace Corps Volunteer Astara Maiure. The project was designed to build a tree nursery to have a widespread impact on the health and nutrition of the community, create food security, increase the available water supply, and provide economic benefits.

To read about the beginning of the project, CLICK HERE.

A summary of Astara’s report is as follows:

Our story
After discussing with community members various issues in the community, we decided to begin an income-generating activity that could benefit everyone. We decided that building a tree nursery would be a great way to provide income, food, clean air, water, and wood to future generations in the region.

After creating a short and long-term business plan, we finally began the preparations. We built and maintained a tree nursery that can hold over 10,000 trees. During the distribution process, thousands of people showed up to show support and plant trees with the community. Whether it was schools, churches, local organizations, police, or gendarmes, everyone showed up time and time again to help replenish the tree supply in the region.

In addition, a new water well was built in order to keep the saplings alive. Furthermore, it now serves as another source of water for the community. This well was built in a larger town where clean water is scarce during the dry season.

Goals Achieved
All of the goals and objectives were reached.

Goal 1: New business skills were achieved (advertising, record keeping with the use of Excel, making posters, business cards, etc.). Capacity was built and the CSA created 10,000 tree saplings.

Goal 2: a marketing plan was created (but not yet fully carried out). Radio advertisements were used along with other forms of advertisement to reach the community.

Capacity and Skills Built
The community has made a ten-year plan to reach even more people and communities after the project is complete. This includes planning, conducting feasibility studies, preparing a business plan, and calculating expenditures and income.

The project began by creating a place to grow the trees, creating saplings, and managing the distribution of them.

The members of the CSA Mandritsara and Association Mahavelona have been able to prepare 10,000 seedlings and manage them to distribution.

Trainings were on basic business skills, such as bookkeeping, marketing, computer literacy, market and product extension. This will serve to amplify the impact of the nursery project for future project growth.

The implementation of a marketing campaign will make many people aware of the benefits of environmental protection. This will compel them to plant more trees in the future.

People were reached through trainings, radio advertisements, and word of mouth. There is new knowledge on the benefits of planting trees. Therefore, people will be more likely to plant trees in the future, helping the environment and any people who live nearby.

We are grateful to Astara for completing this important project. We again extend our thanks to the Robert Victor Sager and Beatrice Mintz Sager Foundation for providing the funding.