Diego Suarez is a picturesque natural harbor in northeastern Madagascar.
Towering above it is Montagne de Francais, a large mountain covered in pristine forest, which shelters dozens of rare species and protects the region’s watershed.
Uncontrolled demand for wood-based products and charcoal threatened to wipe out millions of acres of forest, and in turn threaten the health of local people by disrupting their clean water flow. The unchecked destruction of the forests also threatened the survival of endangered species including local species of lemurs and geckos.
CI worked with the community to help to protect the region’s fragile balance of life. Alongside local partners and the government, we helped establish a new protected reserve called Complex Ramena.
Today we discourage logging by providing alternative sustainable livelihoods for the people there.
Right now, locals are planting fast-growing non-native acacia for charcoal production, and are welcoming tourists who have discovered the incredible beauty of the area. View our stunning slide show >>
Today the people of Diego Suarez have a new respect for their home and the forest that is so vital to their – and our survival.
CI is working to implement this model for conservation in dozens of countries where forests are threatened.