Halt Poverty Madagascar

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Halt Poverty Madagascar: Improving livelihoods of local people living in touristic destinations

Year Founded:
Organization type: 
nonprofit/ngo/citizen sector
Project Stage:
$10,000 - $50,000
Scaling strategies launched within the past 6 months:
Trainings, Consultation
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

Social empowerment and education in Menstrual Hygiene Management - MHM. Using tourism-based actions to foster grassroots community livelihoods to break the cycle of poverty. One of our mission is to launch campaigns on menstruation, nutrition, wash. Education is one cornerstone of a fair travel.

About Project

Problem: What problem is this project trying to address?

In some countries like Madagascar, menstruation is considered as shameful and dirty. Natural materials such as mud, leaves, dung or animal skins are used to manage the menstrual flow. Insufficient access to safe and private toilets, lack of clean water and soap for personal hygiene. Facing long-standing social stigmas, several women and girls become isolated from family, friends, and their communities. Thus fall behind their male counterparts.

Solution: What is the proposed solution? Please be specific!

Investigating: beliefs, literatures, policies associated with MHM. Conduct discussions on MHM to academic and professional entities. Explain about MHM, ask participants to identify challenges with MHM and ensure to gather their ideas for how MHM can be improved. Debrief after each visit and compile the major challenges and solutions proposed. Make available menstrual materials include disposable options: sanitary napkins, handmade pads, soft cups, pads, etc. Design and sell reusable options include: cloths, handmade pads. Availability of service for health, hygiene, and nutrition services: pain medications available in first aid kits, resting place to those feeling unwell, referrals to health clinics for additional health information.


A winning project from the Alumni Engagement Innovation Fund 2015 project competition organized by the U.S. Department of State.
Impact: How does it Work

Example: Walk us through a specific example(s) of how this solution makes a difference; include its primary activities.

Government spending on health and education respectively about 1.5 and 2 percent of GDP in 2015 is well below the average in Sub-Saharan Africa about 2.7 and 4.5 percent of GDP. Interventions that target younger adolescents towards risky social and health-related behaviors that many adolescents and young adults practice such as prostitution, sexual tourism are essential. Especially in high flow of tourists ’areas. At this critical juncture in their development, we can empower adolescents and support their transition into adulthood. Together with local government and schools we can train volunteers, distribute menstrual hygiene materials, train women to manufacture reusable sanitary pads.

Impact: What is the impact of the work to date? Also describe the projected future impact for the coming years.

We sought to see improved existing and new workforce capacities for career development in tour guiding: 100 (aged 18-45) people from 5 regions of Madagascar trained and gained adequate skills and experience to enhance their opportunities either in Madagascar's main tourism destinations or in tour companies. Priority was given to people from a disadvantaged background. At least 5 eco clubs formed in each region: 2,000 (16 or so) people had indirect exposure by joining them, by discussing (e.g. sustainable tourism, community gardening, waste management techniques, etc.) by accessing online materials, by gaining knowledge from exchange with guest speakers including representatives of the 100 selected candidates. Priority access to MHM services will be given to our members. Most of our members are at or below income levels. Madagascar has a long history of weak economic growth.

Spread Strategies: Moving forward, what are the main strategies for scaling impact?

Process evaluation focus on MHM services delivered, the beneficiaries, the resources, the practical problems encountered, and how problems were resolved. 1. Increased participation in classes during menstruation: percentage of recipients that report increased concentration and participation in class, at work during menses, reduced menstruation-related absenteeism 2. Increased in positive menstrual hygiene practices: percentage of recipients who report properly disposing of absorbent materials (sanitary napkins or menstrual cloth), hygienically wash

Financial Sustainability Plan: What is this solution’s plan to ensure financial sustainability?

Registered organization. Submit proposals for funding. Small fees are collected from members to conduct activities. Create an environment of mutual growth in our small group: launch an activity that generate revenue Scaling through community best practitioners: for the people, of the people and by the people.

Marketplace: Who else is addressing the problem outlined here? How does the proposed project differ from these approaches?

We differ from other approaches tackling the same issue as we mainly focus on people involved in tourism industry. Our target beneficiaries are families and workforces in tourism segment. Fragmented depending on their activities: tour guides, agents, tourism institutions, hotels, etc. Whereas other organizations are mainly focused on Malagasy youth and the entire population as a whole.

Founding Story

Madagascar has a long history of weak economic growth amid recurrent political instability. The country has become one of the poorest countries in the world, with over 80 percent of the population living on a less than $1.90 a day. Sexual tourism, no ethics from some operators, corruption, insecurity mostly for road trips on national roads, lack of adequate medical infrastructure, airlines, just to name a few. Tourism can have negative impact on biodiversity: pressure on habitats, from poorly designed or managed tourism operations and activities. Just wanted to bring my input and contribute to poverty alleviation. I decided to apply to different programs and conferences from study abroad to get more insights to use back home in Madagascar.


Halt Poverty was launched as a project in response to the needs to empower human capital in tourism-based activities. In 2015, Halt Poverty was among the winning team project to the Alumni Engagement Innovation Fund competition, was granted with $19, 000. Registered as a non-profit organization in 2016.