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Nov/Dec Arbor Day Foundation Newsletter

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Photo courtesy of Hillary Hamilton


In the island nation of Madagascar, Rain Forest Rescue has been supporting an effort to reverse the destruction of forest habitat that is home to animals like the Black-and-white ruffed lemur, a species listed by the International Union for Conservation of Nature as “critically endangered” and found nowhere else on earth.
Under a unique program initiated by Dr. Edward E. Louis Jr. of the Omaha Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium, corridors of trees are being planted to restore habitat for the lemurs and other animals that depend on the rain forest. And thanks to donations of Arbor Day Foundation members, more than 250,000 trees will be planted this year.
Dr. Louis’ team is employing a local women’s club to weed in the nurseries, prepare compost and transplant seedlings into the areas of reforestation. This group, known in the native language of Madagascar as Vehivavy Vonona, or ‘The Ready Women,’ is helping to fight poverty and transform entire communities. These women are taking leadership roles and making a real difference in their communities and on the forest landscape in their region.
It is efforts like those of Dr. Louis and his team, with donations from Arbor Day Foundation members, that hold the key to the future of lemurs and other wild inhabitants of Madagascar’s forests—and the people who share this land.

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