How can we get Madagascar’s economy back on its feet to fight against extreme poverty?

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Problem: Extreme poverty in Madagascar will continue to get worse as their economy struggles from the pandemic. Extreme poverty refers to those who live on less than $1.90 a day and affects approximately 75% of the 27 million people on the island. About half of Madagascar’s children experience stunting due to undernutrition, and as a result, one in sixteen children die before the age of five. In addition, around 85% of homes do not have access to electricity because of how often natural disasters occur on the island. Madagascar also experiences droughts that can heavily decrease access to clean water for up to 40% of children (Vyawahare). Finally, ecotourism is one of Madagascar’s biggest industries and responsible for the majority of its income and a stable economy. As you can imagine, the pandemic has put this industry on pause for the past year, resulting in a declining economy and a rise in poverty. To help fight against extreme poverty in Madagascar, we need to take many things into consideration as we work around COVID-19 to do so. 

SolutionTo help fight against poverty in Madagascar, we need to provide direct solutions for the short term, while stabilizing their economy for the long term. To help solve the issue in the short term, I think we should start by focusing on wellness centers for malnourished children because they are most at risk of dying from the lack of food and clean water. I find it important to keep the future generations healthy, not only so they grow properly, but so they can at least make it past their teenage years. Next, I think we should teach mothers how to cook and create appropriate diets for them and their children to also help with malnutrition. This will give mothers a better understanding of how to properly provide for their families once they get the opportunity. Lastly, I would like to focus on ecotourism and emphasize how important it is for Madagascar’s economy to thrive. COVID-19 has prohibited a year’s worth of potential income for the country. Tourists are not allowed to enter Madagascar unless they’ve been tested negative, and if you are caught with a mask off, you will face a 24-hour arrest. Restrictions like these will easily demotivate tourists, so I think they should ease up on them if they want ecotourism to flourish. Little changes like that can boost their economy substantially because I believe that tourist motivation is very important for them right now. Thank you for reading, and again, a stable economy will help decrease poverty for the country’s long term, while smaller, more direct solutions can help solve it for the short term. 

My Works Cited can be found here.

Down in the comment section below, let me know what other aspects of this issue would you tackle other than the ones I’ve mentioned above. How would you go about solving them for the short term and the long term?

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