Thursday, 20 June 2019

80 Years

of Walking the Walk

Theresa and friends of MfM Walking for Madagascar 2013 

Theresa is celebrating a life-time of 'walking the walk' for Madagascar by walking 80 miles for 80 years of her life... trekking  along Britain's iconic Hadrian's Wall. Please join in by sponsoring Theresa.
Theresa will be joined by MfM Patron, Hilary Bradt (Author of the Bradt Guide to Madagascar) and other MfM supporters. If you fancy joining her along the way check out the itinerary below. 

Thursday, 6 December 2018


Craft Stall in Cockermouth (Sat 8th Dec)

Money for Madagascar have a Craft stall at Wild Zuccini in Cockermouth this Saturday 8th December.  All our supporters are welcome to come along and support us between 10am and 3pm.

Thursday, 29 November 2018

FUNDRAISER – Saturday 1st December

Jan and Charlie are holding a fundraiser in support of Money for Madagascar at their home this Saturday 1st December between 11 am and 11 pm at 11 Parkway Road, Dudley, DY1 2QA.  Lots of Madagascan Music, Food, Craft Goods and Christmas gifts will be available.  All supporters in the area are welcome to join them.  Come along and get some wonderful Madagascan xmas gifts whilst supporting this worthwhile charity.

Monday, 24 September 2018

Bicentenary Concert
Here are some more photos from the concert - more are available here:

Niddum Ensemble

Paddy Bush and Justin Vali

Craft stall

Wales - Madagascar Bicentenary Concert

Bicentenary Concert
Justin Vali and Paddy Bush were joined on stage by some fine musicians from Madagascar and Wales, and a great time was had by all attending.  Here's a couple of photos from the event, more later.
Justin, Paddy and friends on stage

Justin played the Valiha and other traditional Malagasy instruments
Click here for a video of a sample part of the event.

Monday, 17 September 2018

Bicentenary Concert

Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama Cardiff

 Saturday 22nd September 2018 
A special fundraising concert of Malagasy and Welsh music to celebrate
200 years of cultural connections between the two countries. See here for more information.
Justin Vali  Quintet
Justin Vali ranks among the greatest living players of traditional Malagasy music on the valiha, a bamboo tube zither which is considered to be the national instrument of Madagascar.  He will be joined on stage by Paddy Bush, a singer, songwriter and performer on many exotic instruments. 
Nidum  Ensemble
Formed of young professional musicians, The Nidum Ensemble is a dynamic, diverse and innovative group made up of young Welsh musicians from orchestras including The Royal Philharmonic, The London Symphony, The Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, The BBC Symphony and The BBC National Orchestras.

There will be crafts from Madagascar on sale in the foyer and also a showing of a short film about the first missionaries before the concert and during the interval.
Tickets: £17.50     Concessions: £15.00    Children under 12 free
Available from the College: 02920 391391 or See venue website for tickets

Tuesday, 19 June 2018

Right now, vanilla is not as ‘sweet’ as you may think – here is why.

Vanilla is a highly used product to say the least, it features in a wide variety of desserts, yet there is ultimately a ‘dark side’ surrounding its production. Madagascar is home to 60 – 80% of worldwide Vanilla, (1) yet is suffering due to a large-scale vanilla shortage, making it more expensive than silver. (2) As vanilla is key to so many elements of food, Malagasy farmers are under huge pressure to produce during this shortage. Due to factors such as unpredictable crops thanks to adverse weather, and also the widespread poverty of these farmers, success in the grass-roots Vanilla market is anything but easy.

Vanilla now costs more than ten times as much as it did a few years ago - at a staggering $600 (£429) per Kilo. (2)The many companies that use Vanilla are angered by this surge in price due to lack of consistent growth, yet what are the poor farmers to do when they find it hard enough to make a stable living? The Vanilla harvest can be complicated enough, without even considering the current unstable market and unpredictable weather – even in a good season, each plant must be individually pollinated and nurtured for around 5 years to produce the required seed pods – far from a quick fix for farmers. As it takes so long to produce, when there is a shortage due to adverse conditions, this will be a threatening situation for the Malagasy farmers – where else can they turn for the crop and cash they need to survive?

Some things are for sure though – the price of Vanilla seems set to continue to rise and farmers seem set to continue to struggle – so? The Malagasy farmers really do need a helping hand. There are many ways in which we can do a little but make a big difference in Madagascar. Only a few pounds can ensure shelter, hygiene, education or sanitation. If you would be interested n making such a difference, please consider making a donation at www.moneyformadagascar/donate , Thank you.

Written by Matthew Ward

Friday, 25 May 2018

One of the largest islands in the World, Lemurs, Vanilla, Pepper, Poverty and…….rare medicinal cures ???

Image from Science Daily

Madagascar is an amazing and complex country, filled with often either rare or unique animals and plants; furthermore, a large proportion of world vanilla originates from Madagascar – one of the world’s largest islands. These are some of Madagascar’s ‘highlights’, though unfortunately it’s poverty is also a complex situation, as it can be difficult for people to find their basic needs such as food, water, shelter or health care.

Now though, another interesting detail has emerged – potentially one which could offer life – changing benefits. Madagascar has hundreds of unique plants – yet now, after several decades of research, plant scientists have uncovered a fascinating detail about a plant called Madagascar periwinkle – that it produces a cancer – fighting compound named vinblastine.

A team from the John Innes Centre in Norwich have found that the compound which is found in the leaves of the Periwinkle, can be used to create much needed drugs to fight against Testicular, Breast, Bladder and Lung Cancer.

This plant has been known since the 1950s. What is new and significant about this discovery is that scientists have only just understood how the plant produces vinblastine, and they hope to use the natural product to understand how the compound is produced and thus synthetically produce it to offer a cancer treatment quicker, more effectively and to more people.

This is an example of Madagascar continuing to surprise and produce. There is a problem, though. Madagascar is also one of the poorest countries, in which some people are forced to exploit the environment, merely to survive. It is clear that there are two key elements to work on to allow this amazing country to survive and thrive. It is important to help the people, ensure they get things such a good education, food or sanitation, which can then allow them to succeed and not need to destroy the land – if we help the people, then both they and the natural environment will both win.

If you would like to know more about how this could be done, or to make a donation – and make an immediate impact to Madagascar, please see our website at Thank you.

Sources –

Written By Matthew Ward