Cyclones, perennial drought and locust plagues make the residents of the Atsimo-
Andrefana region of south western Madagascar among the most food-insecure
populations in the world. For decades, livestock have served as a safety net for families
in Atsimo-Andrefana, as nearly two-thirds of households keep livestock. However, as
drought becomes more permanent and cyclones become more powerful, farmers in this
traditional livestock-rearing region have found adaptation to these disasters difficult.
Funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development’s (USAID) Office of Foreign
Disaster Assistance (OFDA), the LIVES program is being implemented by Land O’Lakes
International to address the effects that these natural disasters are having
on livestock-keeping households.
In the first phase, the program is building capacity of farmers whose traditional
management systems do not enable them to replace their herds. During the second
phase, LIVES will build the asset base of vulnerable communes through small ruminant
and chicken restocking and pass-on schemes. Lastly, LIVES will provide a sorely needed
boost to the long-neglected infrastructure (water, wells, fencing), veterinary services and
access to animal health inputs required to maintain a healthy herd. Overall, LIVES will
help to build community resilience so that farmers can have a system in place to support
one another as disaster strikes.
As the program winds down, LIVES participants can graduate to further support under
the USAID-funded ASOTRY project