Volunteer: Mangrove restoration and community revitalization in Madagascar

Honko’s Volunteer Program based in rural Ambondrolava, in SouthWest Madagascar, has immediate openings for volunteers to stay for up to 3 months working on a project of their choice. Whether you are interested in conducting research or assisting with community projects, contact us and we can find a project that is a great fit for you!

This is a great opportunity for anyone looking for field experience, an adventure, or looking to enter the field of conservation, restoration, and/or sustainable development. Living at Honko, you will not only have the opportunity to explore the mangroves, but also to interact and learn from the local communities – many of our volunteers say that is their favorite part of their Honko experience! This is a great chance to see a part of the world that not many have the opportunity to explore and a good way to make a positive change in people’s lives.

Honko is a Belgian registered non-profit working in partnership with the coastal communities of southwest Madagascar, to improve local livelihoods, and quality of life by working with this fragile and amazing environment instead of against it.

Founded in 2007, Honko works in one of the most impoverished areas in Madagascar, the arid southwest. Honko works with the local communities to conserve the threatened mangrove forests and associated wetlands in the Ambondrolava mangrove complex, an area that includes five mangrove-dependent communities: Belalanda, Tanambao, Belitsake, Ambondrolava and Ambotsibotsike. With the established Mangrove Information Center, Honko is able to educate not only the local people but also visitors from all over the world on mangrove ecology and conservation. By also introducing a variety of alternative livelihoods, Honko strives to build community resilience in the face of a changing natural environment.


Mangrove restoration

Sound science is needed to help develop management plans for any kind of ecosystem. By working together with local universities and institutions, we strive to improve student research skills on a variety of natural and social topics, and build on Honko’s knowledge base regarding the Ambondrolava mangrove complex. Honko’s Mangrove Ecosystem Monitoring Program (started in February 2014) is a new initiative to bring in regular, long-term data on the health of the mangrove ecosystem, focusing on permanent plots throughout healthy, degraded, deforested, and replanted areas throughout 107ha of mangrove forest. Data collected from this program will help the local management association, VOI Mamelo Honko, to make informed management decisions and evaluate past management activities such as replanting efforts.

Through Honko’s approach of empowering the community and local management association, and training them on community-based mangrove management (which includes replanting cleared areas), the Ambondrolava mangrove complex and nearby communities will have a brighter and more sustainable future.

Desired requirements: Master student in Environmental sciences, Biology, Geography, Gender studies, etc., good knowledge of English and/or French, and be open minded and adaptable with a strong interest in field work.
Duration: We accept volunteers year-round on a rolling basis. However, because we have limited space, we recommend that you apply well in advance of your preferred time period if possible. We recommend volunteers stay a period of 3 months.
Cost: As we are a small organization and do not currently have the resources to support volunteers, we require a contribution of €300/month, which covers all food and accommodation at the site and a small contribution to help cover the costs of running Honko’s site in Ambondrolava.

See full volunteer opportunity.

See Honko website.

See Honko Facebook page. (where most planting/reforestation activities are listed)

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