Cyclones Batsirai and Emnati hit the southern Ikongo district within two weeks of each other in February 2022, tearing through communities and leaving an aftermath of destruction. Hundreds of schools were totally destroyed and hundreds more lost their rooves. Bridges collapsed, landslides cut off roads, fields were silted over and swathes of crops and trees were destroyed. Thousands of already poor families were left homeless and without any food reserves. Whilst we have helped thousands, the plight of the wider population is worsening in part due to the lack of basic health services after many health centres were destroyed in the cyclones.
The municipality of Ankarimbelo, on the eastern edge of the rainforest, suffered the highest death rates during the cyclones and its two main health centres were devastated. After the cyclones last year, Ankarimbelo Hospital was reduced to one leaking room where newborn babies and mothers were crammed in with sufferers of infectious diseases. Over the past few months we have rebuilt the hospital in Ankarimbelo and the health centre in Faliarivo - not an easy feat with most of the construction materials brought in by foot through the forest. Now over 28,000 people have access to improved heath services. Click here for more One Year On information and how you can help.
Antoebe Primary School One Year After Cyclone Batsirai: A Story of Determination
Feedback Madagascar has worked with the community of Antoebe, near the forest in the Ambohimahamasina municipality, for 3 years. Together we have made agricultural improvements, dug a clean water borehole, set up the school canteen and, all the while, increased the capacity of the community to realise their own projects.
Until recently the primary school had just one classroom for over 90 pupils. At the end of 2021, parents and teachers decided to build an additional school building, with two classrooms, so all students could be taught properly at the same time. The work was almost finished in February 2022 when Cyclone Batsirai hit, destroying the new school building, causing devastation and shattering livelihoods.
Undeterred, the parents decided to start again but lacked funds for materials. The community asked Feedback Madagascar for help to pay for roofing sheets, fixings and cement. Now, the rebuild is totally finished and the new building is bringing dry, quiet, safe, focused, full-time education to the 90 children. All thanks to the fortitude of the parents, the partnership with Feedback Madagascar and the generosity of our donors.
Click here for more One Year On information and how you can help.
Cyclone Batsirai and then Cyclone Emnati hit Madagascar in February 2022, causing a wave of destruction across some of Feedback Madagascar's main project areas – killing 140 people, destroying houses, schools, health centres, roads and bridges, as well as fields, trees and crops that were close to harvest. Now, over a year later, the people of Madagascar are still working hard to recover from the devastation
Thanks to Feedback Madagascar’s partnership with affected communities and generous funds from our donors, we have been able to support many victims. We have rebuilt infrastructure essential for social services and economic recovery. We have repaired more than 280 schools(Ready for the new school year in September) and build 3 new health centres.
With roads and bridges destroyed many people were completely isolated and could not sell or access goods and essentials. Health services became negligible. With the bridge at Ifanirea severed, 70,000 people were cut off from the rest of Madagascar, only able to cross the river by foot when the water was low enough. Now, after our repairing the bridge, vehicles can bring goods and medical supplies in and out, we can get food to our school canteens and many people were able to flee the countryside to the safe structures of the town when Cyclone Freddy hit this year.
Feedback Madagascar and Ny Tanintsika have a project that aims to improve watershed management education and empower people living in the Ikongo region to improve their watershed health. Read the story here.
World Nutrition Day Celebration
Tsiky and the School Feeding Team were in Ambositra to celebrate World Nutrition Day in November.
Buy a Frances Macdonald and/or a Ross Ryan picture, change lives and save forest!
Renowned artists Frances Macdonald and Ross Ryan (Mother and son) have very kindly donated two beautiful pictures for us to raise money with.
They are currently exhibiting together in The Scottish Gallery, 16 Dundas St, Edinburgh - "A Family Affair"
We are auctioning the pictures now. These are kind and thoughtful donations especially when this year we are unable to fundraise with events.
If you successfully bid for one, or both, you will not only have a beautiful piece of art but all your money will go to our work to help the poorest people of Madagascar improve their lives and protect their unique forests.
All bids to be in by midnight Wednesday 23rd December 2020.
Please email your bid to Jamie at firstname.lastname@example.org
And if you would like to discuss details with Jamie either email or phone him on +44 (0)7551955927
We will adjust the "bids so far" as they come in, in red, under each picture above.
Broar break world record!
After over a month at sea, three Scottish brothers raising money for Feedback Madagascat have set three World Records in the Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge – dubbed the toughest row in the world.
Not only are they the fastest trio to ever have rowed across the Atlantic Ocean, beating the previous record by a whopping six days, they are also the first three brothers to row any ocean, and the youngest trio to ever paddle their way across the Atlantic.
Ewan, Jamie and Lachlan MacLean, sons of acclaimed whisky writer and connoisseur Charles MacLean, set off from La Gomera in the Canary Islands on 12 December last year, spending Christmas and New Year in the middle of the ocean, and completed the epic 3,000-mile row to Antigua in exactly 35 days, nine hours and nine minutes.
The MacLeans overcame severe seasickness, battery issues, storms, dehydration and utter exhaustion – as well as the typical rowing blisters, aches and pains that come hand in hand with the endurance sport – to reach Antigua last night. The sound of Jamie’s pipes sounded their arrival on the horizon, and they made their way into shore to be welcomed by hoards of friends, family and well-wishers.
MD of Feedback Madagascar, Jamie Spencer OBE, said: "Ewan, Jamie and Lachlan are an amazing team, it seems like there's nothing they can't do."
"Their strength and determination have helped them beat this record at the same time as saving and transforming lives with every stroke. Every £5,000 raised pays for a freshwater borehole for a village in
Madagascar - that's freshwater for 3,000 people so far, and rising."
Feedback Madagascar has joined with Mary's Meals to deliver school meals to over 9000 pupils in almost 70 schools.
Three rural areas have been chosen for this project – Amoron’i Mania, Haute Matsiatra and Vatovavy-Fitovinany –representing the three principal regions where Feedback Madagascar currently works. These areas present very different geographical, socio-cultural and economic contexts.
The planned menu for the schools will include rice with pinto beans on Mondays and Fridays, rice with greens and peanut sauce on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and rice with lentils on Wednesday.
Managing director of Feedback Madagascar, Jamie Spencer, said: "It is fantastic that two charities from Argyll are partnering to launch this new project in Madagascar. Many of us take for granted that we will have three meals a day – with extra snacks when we feel peckish. Children in these areas will usually only eat once a day at most. Providing daily food at school will help the children to perform better in the classroom and feel safe in the knowledge that they will receive a nutritious meal every day the attend.”
Mary's Meals Founder, Magnus MacFarlane-Barrow, said: “We are so incredibly thankful that the dedication of our supporters and the local knowledge and experience of our new partner has allowed us to reach many more children in Madagascar, who desperately need our support. I was lucky enough to meet the wonderful community surrounding just one of the new programme schools earlier this year.
Magnus added: “I am so glad and humbled that – thanks to the continued generosity and goodness of our supporters, volunteers and our new partner – we are able to transform the lives of children at this school, and many others throughout Madagascar.”
Launch of Maclean's Pillage!
As part of our training for the 2019 Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge, we launched a ‘Whisky for Water’ campaign to provide clean water to thousands in Madagascar, rowing up the West Coast of Scotland and ‘pillaging’ whisky from distilleries as we went.
Over the course of ten days, we covered about 300 miles, rowing from Lochranza on the Isle of Arran to Talisker on Skye, visiting the 16 distilleries that had very kindly donated whisky towards the campaign.
The donated whisky is being blended by a team of experts led by our father, Charles MacLean, and advised by the legendary Richard Paterson. We will release a film of the whole blending process, which is likely to lead to two or three distinctive expressions. The first batch of this unique and limited edition ‘Maclean’s Pillage’ blend will be auctioned by Royal Mile Whiskies; date (in early 2020) yet to be announced.
Every drop sold will make a difference. All funds raised will go towards life-saving fresh water boreholes in Madagascar, and every single bottle will pay for clean water for life for several Malagasy families. Want to find out more, or be one of the first to taste the blend? Register here for updates. Or make a bid: we are inviting supporters to make a ‘blind bid’, with the top 20 winning a unique bottle of ‘MacLean’s Pillage’, signed by Charles, Ewan, Jamie and Lachlan MacLean
Three Scottish brothers who will be rowing 3000 miles across the Atlantic Ocean officially launched their boat onto the much calmer waters of Loch Lomond.
The MacLean brothers, Jamie, Ewan and Lachlan who make up team BROAR, will be the first three brothers to row any ocean as they take on the Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge this December.
Named the world’s toughest row, the brothers will be taking on this challenge in order to raise £250,000 for their chosen charities, Children 1st and Feedback Madagascar.
They will row day and night, repeating shifts of two hours of rowing and one hour of rest until reaching the other side. The crossing will take between 40 to 60 days through 40-foot waves, shark-infested waters and busy shipping lanes
Managing Director of Feedback Madagascar, Jamie Spencer, said: “What these three lads are doing is simply incredible. Not only is the training gruelling but the race itself will take an incredible toll on them both mentally and physically. To think that they are undertaking this challenge to help Feedback Madagascar continue our work is very humbling."
Eldest brother, Ewan said “We are really excited to launch this campaign, the interest in our challenge has been phenomenal and to have people show up today from the US, Germany and Poland means so much to us.”
To learn more about the Broar team and to support their campaign, please click here.