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Madagascar's Citizens Save Themselves As Country Floods

Inondation à Madgascar via @MiranaPriscilla sur twitter

Inundations in Antananarivo, Madagascar via @MiranaPriscilla on twitter

As floods and torrential rains keep plaguing many regions of Madagascar, a few citizen initiatives have taken it upon themselves to provide relief to those displaced by the disaster. The authorities reported that 20 people had died and 71,854 had been displaced as of March 3. The current situation poses daunting challenges to coordinating the rescue effort: several dykes surrounding the capital city could burst at anytime under pressure from the continuous downpour. Still, many associations have come forward to provide first aid kits and staple foods.

Flood in Madagascar via Tsimoka Gasikara

Flood in Madagascar via Tsimoka Gasikara

Wake Up Madagascar is a citizen movement that started during Madagascar's political stalemate in 2010. With more than 9,400 fans on Facebook, its call for action on March 1 helped collect 489 donations, including clothing, shoes, sheets, pillows, mosquito nets, kitchen utensils, and staple products like rice, oil, and corn. By the end of the day on March 1, organizers gifted the donations to the families affected by the flooding:
Crédit Photo: Wake Up Madagascar

Crédit Photo: Wake Up Madagascar

In a Facebook videoWake Up Madagascar illustrates the spirit of the movement and the charity its members managed on March 1:
 

Capture d'écran de la video de Wake Up Madagascar

The video explains that there is no time to waste when it comes to showing national unity and mobilizing to help the less fortunate. Not shying from politics, Wake Up Madagascar also faults members of Madagascar's parliament for showing more interest on new 4X4 trucks than their displaced constituents.
 
Ataovy manakoako ho RE sy HITAn’ireo solom-bavam-bahoaka sy ireo mpitantana ny volam-panjakana fa …
LAVINAO NY 4X4 HO AN’NY DEPIOTE

Make sure that you tell the MPs and the members of the government that you do not agree with the fact that MPs are about to award themselves 4X4 trucks.

 
Food distribution in Antananarivo, Madagascar via Wake Up Madagascar

Food distribution in Antananarivo, Madagascar via Wake Up Madagascar

The Weselfie2015 project was launched by two university students from Reunion Island. For each selfie tagged with #weselfie2015 (on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram), 50 Euro cents (about $.55) will be donated to the Association Akamasoa of Father Pedro, a humanitarian, anti-poverty association from Madagascar that works with families and orphans living in Antananarivo. Many citizens have already joined in the campaign, and those who still want to participate have until March 6 to sign up.
 
Fanja Aina, a Weselfie2015 selfie participant, shows her support on Instagram:  
 
Fanja Aina sur Instagram #Weselfie2015

Fanja Aina sur Instagram #Weselfie2015

As does Andry (and his cat) on Facebook: 
 
Andry sur Facebook: Weselfie20015

Andry sur Facebook: Weselfie20015

L'Élan du Cœur (“Drive from the Heart”) is a citizen initiative that aims to encourage young Malagasy people to contribute to the future of the country by focusing on the education of the impoverished children. Faced with the recent floods that hit the capital city, L'Elan du Coeur has organized a food and donation bank that will remain open until Thursday, March 5, to provide assistance to the victims. 
Photo de couverture de la page Facebook de l'Elan du coeur sur Facebook

Cover photo of the Elan du Coeur Facebook page

In the urban quarter of Soavina and Ankazotoho Anosimahavelona, the Danny Gemestone Association and Foko Madagascar blog community came together to distribute rice bags, candles, and water bottles.

These are just a few examples of citizen initiatives and there are still many others, of course, doing important work on the ground today in Madagascar. As ordinary concerned individuals get their feet wet and their hands dirty, those in the flooded areas they can't reach are still waiting on the state to follow suit and swing into action.

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