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Limited Access to Water Curtails Madagascar’s Climate-Smart Agriculture

Besakoa, Madagascar: Most days, Hitasoa ignores breakfast and lunch. She is too busy finding enough money to buy food for dinner – and even that is a challenge in Madagascar’s dry south, where the worst drought in 35 years has wiped out the maize crop.

“There has been no rain at all. We don’t harvest anything. It’s worse this year,” said the 56-year-old who goes by one name.

Like other women in the region, Hitasoa turns wood into charcoal, hoisting it onto her head to sell at market every day.

“I’m losing my hair from carrying all this charcoal,” she said, drawing laughter from friends as she bent her head and pointed to neat rows of glossy plaits. “There aren’t even enough trees left.”

Frank Vassen

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