Two young boys standing on sand in Southern Madagascar

Madagascar Food Crisis

Category: Emergency response

Back-to-back droughts caused by climate change in southern Madagascar have left thousands of people facing desperate hunger. In May 2021, the World Food Programme warned that more than a million people in the region were short of food, with 14,000 in “catastrophic conditions”.

Up to 80% of the population had resorted to desperate survival measures, such as eating locusts, raw red cactus fruits or wild leaves. Acute malnutrition in children doubled in four months.

The people of Southern Madagascar are paying the devastating price for a climate crisis they have done nothing to create.” This is not because of war or conflict, this is because of climate change. This is an area of the world that has contributed nothing to climate change, but they’re the ones paying the highest price” David Beasley, Director of UN World Food Programme

As always in times of crises, people with disabilities and their families are among those most vulnerable – and the least likely to access emergency help. Already often among the poorest in their communities, they may be unable to walk long distances to access emergency food distribution or find out about what help is available.

CBM has been working with our partner in the region since June 2021 to provide emergency relief to vulnerable families, especially those with disabilities. 

We’re providing urgent assistance to 1,100 families in the Anosy and Androy regions of Southern Madagascar, including 241 people with disabilities, enabling them to access food, water, medication, soap and other essentials.  

Our local partners identified the most highly food insecure families, including households with people with disabilities. Each family is receiving cash support so they can buy food, soap, medication and other essentials as well as livelihood support. The aim is to enable every family to cover their basic needs for 5 months through this ongoing catastrophic situation, but also to help them improve their future food security and ability to earn an income, for example through buying chickens.

As well as providing direct support to these families, we are working with local disability organizations in the region to ensure that other agencies responding to the crisis are making the emergency relief they offer accessible to people with disabilities. By using our expertise and harnessing the knowledge of our local partners in this way, we can help ensure that people with disabilities aren’t forgotten - and have a much bigger impact than we could by working alone.

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