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Madagascar is an island off the southeastern coast of Africa with a total area of 228,880 sq miles (about the area of Texas) and a population of28.8 million at a density of 123.5/sq mile.


Madagascar, despite its breathtaking natural beauty and rich cultural heritage, faces numerous challenges that hinder its development and progress. One of the most pressing issues is poverty, with a significant portion of the population living below the poverty line.


According to a World Bank study, in 2022, 75.2 percent of the national population was poor (79.9 percent for rural and 55.5 percent for urban areas). Among its peers, Madagascar remains one of the poorest countries regionally and globally. Madagascar’s poverty rate measured at the international poverty line of $2.15 per day per capita is 50.9 percent. This poverty is further compounded by high levels of unemployment, particularly among youth, as well as low wages and limited access to education and healthcare.


Additionally, Madagascar's economy is vulnerable as the country relies heavily on agriculture, mining, and tourism as key sources of income, leaving it susceptible to factors such as climate change, political instability, and market volatility. Furthermore, issues such as corruption, inadequate infrastructure, and a challenging business environment have deterred foreign investment and hindered economic growth.

Despite these challenges, Madagascar's people have demonstrated remarkable resilience and resourcefulness in the face of adversity. Community-based initiatives, entrepreneurship, and efforts to promote sustainable development are emerging as potential pathways to overcome economic hardships and create a brighter future for the nation.

As Madagascar continues to navigate its economic challenges, there is a growing recognition of the need for inclusive and sustainable development strategies that prioritize poverty reduction, job creation, and social empowerment. By harnessing its natural resources, investing in human capital, and fostering an enabling environment for innovation and entrepreneurship, Madagascar has the potential to overcome its economic struggles and unlock new opportunities for growth and prosperity.


Defining Humanity’s partnership with the University of Fianarantsoa is a step towards helping the Malagasy youth reach their full potential and accelerate the country’s growth