My first official day at WWF! Malalatiana, the volunteer coordinator, is my guide through the day,
and patient enough to put up with my limited French skills and all of my questions. Throughout the
day, there is a bunch of names to remember, and I get a first overview of conservation issues in
Madagascar. It is interesting to hear how the focus of WWF’s work has shifted from protecting
wildlife through helping establish protected areas, to now being put much more on working with
communities through environmental education, developing alternative livelihoods etc. Like
conservation organizations all around the world, they have understood that nature can never be
preserved against the will and needs of the people who depend on it.
On my 2nd walk down l’Avenue de l’Independance, I am hardly addressed by anyone, and I take a
weird kind of pride (that I am not proud of) in this fact. Is it something about the way I walk, or about
the expression on my face, that already makes me look a little less like an absolute greenhorn?