Partners of Fert for several years, Laurent Poupart, President of Action Solidarité Madagascar (ASM), Thibaut de Fouchécour, Groupama RSE Manager and members of the ASM Corrèze and Haute-Vienne association flew to the red island in April 2022. This trip was above all an opportunity to meet their Malagasy partners and producer organizations from the Fifata group – partners of Fert – which they support or plan to support in their development.

Map showing the itinerary and the organizations met
by Action Solidarité Madagascar

Action Solidarité Madagascar

Resulting from a partnership between Groupama and Générations Mouvement, Action Solidarité Madagascar has been committed for 25 years to the Malagasy populations in the fields of education, vocational training, health and the environment. The national association chaired by Laurent Poupart federates 22 French departmental and regional associations which together support more than 30 local projects. Since its creation more than 2 million euros have been collected to finance the construction of schools, dispensaries, support sustainable agriculture and many other projects.

Action Solidarité Madagascar for Fifata group

  • 2021-2022 – Fekama agricultural colleges: financial contribution (€12 k) for the canteen of Fekama agricultural colleges in addition to the rice brought by the families of young people in formation
  • 2022-2024 – SGM (FO member of Fifata in the Ihorombe region): support for the improvement of agricultural practices to counter the effects of climate change (45 k€)
  • Under consideration by ASM Corrèze and Haute-Vienne: partnership with Ceffel to improve apple production in the Vakinankaratra region

Farmers at the heart of solidarity action

Action Solidarité Madagascar and Fert have in common the desire to give farmers a central place in development actions. They are the ones who are best able to know the relevance and accuracy of the projects. Starting from their initiatives is fundamental to guarantee the viability of the actions in the long term.

Agriculture is the mainstay of the economy in the Ihorombe region in the south of Madagascar. For several years producers have been encountering growing problems linked to climate change: severe droughts and insufficient water for crops, increased pressure from diseases and pests, etc. This situation weakens production and therefore the living conditions of farmers and their families.

To deal with these constraints, Soa Gny Mivoasty (SGM), an organization of producers in the Ihorombe region member of Fifata has developed, with the support of Fert and Fifata, effective alternatives that need to be strengthened: ground cover, planting of trees, organic fertilization, use of biopesticides…

Wishing to support farmers in the adoption of agroecological practices, Action Solidarité Madagascar offered Fert its support to accompany SGM over a period of three years.

Meet, exchange, share

Laurent Poupart and Thibaut de Fouchécour traveled to Ihorombe to get to know the managers of SGM, to better understand their problems and to be able to testify within ASM about the relevance of the support offered to farmers.
The President of Action Solidarité Madagascar, Laurent Poupart, also a cereal and potato producer in Nord-Pas-de-Calais, was able to exchange “from farmer to farmer” with the locals. This sharing of passion and knowledge of the profession is a permit for simple and authentic exchanges with Malagasy farmers.

« On a été très favorablement impressionnés par le fait que SGM est vraiment en appui et dans l’accompagnement des paysans. On a vu concrètement les cultures et on a pu échanger directement avec les agriculteurs ».

ASM team were also able to visit the Fekama agricultural college in Ambalavao. At the end of 2021 the association participated in financing the canteen costs of 300 middle school students; this visit was an opportunity to take stock with educators and young people in training in one of the 5 agricultural colleges.

They also went to Antsirabe to visit Ceffel, an organization specializing in advice, training and experimentation in fruit and vegetables, also a member of the Fifata group. The representatives of the regional association ASM Corrèze and Haute-Vienne discussed with the managers of Ceffel with whom they wish to initiate a partnership for the development of apple production.

This visit as close as possible to Malagasy farmers reinforced the motivation and commitment of Action Solidarité Madagascar alongside the agri-agency Fert, whose values they share: cooperation, mutualism and solidarity. The official signing of the Sponsorship Agreement between the association Action Solidarité Madagascar and Fert, to support the action of SGM-Fifata, is scheduled for the ASM General Assembly on July 5, 2022.

Photo credit : Thibaut de Fouchécour