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ABOUT US

CPALI is an international NGO dedicated to a community-centered approach to conservation. Protected areas and national parks are important for conserving habitats and ecosystems. But vulnerable people have depended on those same habitats and ecosystems for generations for their livelihood. To address this problem, CPALI focuses on people and strengthens the existing relationship between local people and the environment through the development of sustainable livelihoods. 

 

Our current project is in rural Madagascar near the largest remaining rainforested area in the country. Over 1% of the world’s biodiversity is represented within this region. CPALI works with a network of subsistence farmers to cultivate native resources and secure a market for them. 

 

Farmers working with our project experience the value of conservation directly by producing new products from the land they steward. Farmers living on the borders of the Makira and Masoala Protected Areas who have worked with CPALI and SEPALIM have planted about 30,000 native trees in former clear-cut zones, intercropping them with edible plants. 

 

Native silkworms feed on these trees, and the farmers have raised them to produce silk cocoons. Depending on a variety of circumstances, the farmers release the silkworms back into the wild as adult moths after metamorphosis, or cook the pupae to provide much-needed protein to their families’ diets. Many of the farmers have become “citizen scientists”: some, for example, discovered that edible native mushrooms grew under the new trees and these mushrooms could be sold for cash at market. The farmers have discovered new ways that native flora and fauna can improve their own lives without destroying the rainforest or native animal populations. 

 

CPALI’s unique approach to conservation challenges the idea that conservation and development are fundamentally opposed and works at the grassroots level to develop a mutually beneficial way to maintain a healthy environment. 

 

Our project in Madagascar develops natural livelihoods previously unknown to rural farmers and provides a rare opportunity for subsistence farmers to earn cash to support their families. Our holistic approach looks beyond mere subsistence and strives to develop opportunities for better health, nutrition and education that will benefit both communities and parks alike.

 

CPALI wild silk farmers are raising native species of silkworms that feed on native trees. Producing silk cocoons, sewing silk textiles, and learning how to prepare insects as protein supplements are some of the projects in which farmers and their families are engaged. Click the link above to learn more.


CPALI works closely with the Malagasy NGO, "Sehatry ny Mpamokatra Landy Ifotony, Madagascar" (Association of Wild Silk Producers) or SEPALI Madagascar. Mamy Ratsimbazafy, CPALI’s local director, founded SEPALI Madagascar in 2009 and manages a staff of 15 workers.  Together, the SEPALI staff maintain a demonstration site and travel to 13 different communities to work with farmers. Artisans are trained at the SEPALI workshop to sew an innovative non-spun textile and to weave raffia (a leaf fiber native to Madadascar). The products are sold through our online market, Ta’na’na.

CPALI Site 1: Madagascar

A New Approach:

CPALI’s unique approach to conservation challenges the idea that conservation and development are fundamentally opposed and works at the grassroots level to develop a mutually beneficial way to maintain a healthy environment. 

 

Our project in Madagascar develops natural livelihoods previously unknown to rural farmers and provides a rare opportunity for subsistence farmers to earn cash to support their families. Our holistic approach looks beyond mere subsistence and strives to develop opportunities for better health, nutrition and education that will benefit both communities and parks alike.

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