Conservation in Madagascar got a big boost this week, as Mamy Razafitsalama of Planet Madagascar won a Whitley Fund for Nature award! The Lemur Conservation Network congratulates Mamy for this great honor. This award is a testament to his hard work and his dedication to lemur conservation in Madagascar. In this blog post, learn more about the award, about Mamy’s work with Planet Madagascar, and how he plans to use the prize money to support conservation.
About the Whitley Fund for Nature Awards
The Whitley Fund for Nature (WFN) is a UK fundraising and grant-giving charity. Their awards aim to support conservation leaders working in their home countries across the Global South. The charity aims to offer long-term support for their award winners who’s work is rooted in communities that create lasting benefits for wildlife, landscapes and people.
This year the Whitley Fund for Nature awarded seven conservationists in recognition of their outstanding contribution to conservation. 6 of the 7 award winners received £40,000 ($50,000 USD) in funding to support their conservation projects.
Among this year’s winners is Mamy Razafitsalama, in-country director for Planet Madagascar!
About Mamy’s Work with Planet Madagascar
Across Western Madagascar, the primary driver of deforestation is fire. Approximately 95% of this fire is a result of humans. Ankarafantsika National Park is one of the largest remaining fragments of western primary forest but is under threat from fire, slash and burn agriculture, logging, domestic grazing and construction. The national park is home to eight lemur species, five of which are threatened with extinction, including the Critically Endangered Coquerel’s sifaka.
Protecting the remaining continuous forests and forest fragments in the park, while working with and alongside local communities, is critical for lemurs to stand a chance of survival.
We are so proud of Mamy and the work he is doing. He and I started off with an idea while we were working on our PhD and MA respectively, which has now blossomed into an organization that is making important changes helping people, lemurs, and the forests they both rely on.”
— Travis Steffens, PhD, Founder and Executive Director of Planet Madagascar
About Planet Madagascar
Planet Madagascar is a Canadian registered NGO working in Northwest Madagascar and Ankarafantsika National Park. The organisation is focused on working with local residents to build sustainable forest communities. Their main goals are to stop deforestation, protect forests, and rebuild forests while addressing the needs of surrounding communities that rely on the forest. Planet Madagascar is a proud member of the Lemur Conservation Network.