Reforestation of Madagascar continues with the help of Cartiere Favini. Again this year, Favini, that has always had a strong sense of social and environmental responsibility, is continuing its commitment to protecting the ecosystem of Madagascar. Project “Voiala”, which Favini has been a part of since 2009, is a microcosm of EU initiatives aimed at recreating and protecting the natural resources that have been heavily exploited on this African island.
Based on the experience of the village of Sahavondronina, which is located on the eastern coast of Madagascar, the project’s primary objective is to create a model that other communities can follow, while underscoring the benefits that can be achieved in terms of the land and its natural resources simply by adopting more informed, respectful conduct.
The project includes efforts to teach people more innovative farming techniques that are also more respectful of the local ecosystem, that contribute to the development of an ecological tourism industry, and that, at the same time, can improve the quality of life for the community as a whole.
For the first three years, Project Voiala focused on protecting the 2,077 hectares of virgin forests from further exploitation, poaching and destruction, as well as on related education initiatives. At the same time, infrastructures to facilitate reforestation were also created. Over the next three years, the village will be able to reforest 25 hectares of exploited land with a wide variety of trees. As many as 18,224 trees are ready to be planted and will join the 12,500 trees planted in 2013.
For the period 2013-2014, the area involved was expanded with the opening of a new elementary school in Antezamana, a village near Sahavondronina, the hub for the efforts undertaken thus far. Teaching materials have been made available for the initiative, as this is the best means of disseminating a new culture among young people.
Given that education is at the heart of this program, a tour of the “eco-tourism” area of Sahavondronina was organized for 135 primary-school students, as these children represent the future for this area. This helped to make environmental education more real as the children discovered the forest and became more aware of how important it is to respect the environment in order to protect this natural heritage and thereby protect their own future.
Andrea Nappa, managing director for Favini, said, “Favini’s commitment to a project of such importance is perfectly in line with the philosophy of protecting the environment that we have always focused on. We are a company that takes pride in research and innovation, but without forgetting to protect our ecosystem; and the development of products like Shiro Alga Carta and Crush, the work we have done with Barilla to create Cartacrusca, and our partnership with the Voiala association to help the people of Madagascar are the embodiment of this philosophy.”
Favini has also obtained certification by the international Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), a guarantee that documents observance of strict environmental, social and economic standards in the raw materials used to produce paper and other wood-based products. Favini’s web site includes a section dedicated to Project Voiala, which provides a detailed description of the project along with news about the progress being made.