Fahavaratra is finally here

February 2016

Malagasy people use the word fahavaratra to identify the season that people in northern countries are used to call summer.

The word comes from the term varatra which means lightening. Contrary to what is usually experienced in the northern emisphere, in Madagascar light comes with rain, a lot of rain. It pours down from the sky in floods that invest villages paralyzing the daily life of people that are busy trying to keep their houses and family safe.

Rainfalls also bring a great challenge for our farmers and for the trees they have recently planted: are they strong enough to survive the fahavaratra?

Every season farmers become more experienced and this makes the mortality rate among trees decrease each year. But as local people have come to know, rain is unpredictable. For them, reducing tree mortality is not about experience but about finoana. Which in Malagasy language means faith.