How we work and the 4 key value

Our Team works across North West Madagascar, and especially in the islands of Nosy Komba, Nosy Mitsio and Nosy Be

In these islands, we strive to build an inclusive infrastructure of human rights and to forge healthy and empowered communities, in line with the 2030 SDGs. Our programmes spam from Water, Sanitation & Hygiene – the core foundation of our work – to Nutrition, Social Entrepreneurship. We also run Training, Creative practice and Sport projects.
All our programmes are evidence-based and designed by development professionals and in partnership with academic centres of excellence.

In line with our core values all our projects are carried out for local people and by local people in respect of their environment and culture. To us, it is fundamental that all programmes respond to issues and needs flagged by the communities. Moreover, since our Founder and Director is fluent in the local language, we make sure  that constantant dialogue and mutual understanding stand at the bases of any intervention. 

Our approach is consistently bottom up, evidence based, cross-sectoral and long-term.

Through our projects and programmes we seek to bring positive change in four main areas: health and wellbeing, women’s empowerment, skills development and financial sustainability.

Health improvements
and well-being

In Madagascar, most deaths are still linked to diseases that could be easily prevented.

H4O long-term prevention programmes aim to improve public health as well as respond to global outbreaks of life-threatening WASH related diseases such as cholera, typhoid fever, hepatitis and COVID-19.

Women's empowerment

Help for Optimism works with women and for women. As a matter of fact, H4O in Madagascar is 100% run by a trained team of local women. The approach is based on sharing knowledge and expertise, ensuring access to resources and creating a gender-inclusive dialogue to train and shape women leaders. H4O interventions are designed to be gender-responsive infrastructures that reduces exposure to gender-based violence by improving privacy and menstrual hygiene.

Skills development

The role of H4O within the framework of Skills development is to train community members on specific sectors through Training of Trainers (ToT) activities. With this objective, H4O sets Community Management Committees in each community that benefits from the projects and train new Junior professionals in charge of O&M. 

Financial sustainability

Madagascar’s economy is barely self-sufficient and it mainly relies on exporting raw material, tourism, foreigner investments and international aid. Around 75% of inhabitants is estimated to live below the poverty line of 1.90$ per day and the low purchasing power has opened the market mainly to low quality products (usually) from Asia. Within this worrying picture H4O makes its contribution by enabling local communities to take advantage and add value to their own natural and human resources.

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