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  Jan 11, 2018             Introduction Blog written by Margaret

Introducing our newest Volunteer, Margaret!

“Manaona daholo (Hello everyone), 

My name is Margaret and I am a post-undergraduate from EKU in Anthropology. I live on a farm in eastern Kentucky and my first time venturing out of the home nest was to Costa Rica in 2013, working with the Maderas Rainforest Conservancy Group. While there I was studying primate ecology and behavior (primarily howler monkeys Alouatta palliata), where I slowly started becoming interested in forest fragments and edge effects. In 2014, I traveled to Madagascar for independent research in ethnoprimatology (working with eulemur sanfordi and coronatus, vocal survey of phaner electromontis) and to participate in SIT Study Abroad: Traditional Medicine and Healthcare Systems. I fell in love with the country and came back in 2015, living in Tana since teaching English, ecology, history, and culture to primary and secondary levels. My focus within anthropology is generally studying the relationship between humans and the environment (as well as non-human primates), which greatly overlaps with my other background in medical anthropology. It was in the north of Madagascar, Mt. d’Ambre, I realized I wanted to work with people more, as their stories and dedication to protect biodiversity captivated me. 

I am using this opportunity with MBP as a learning experience to strengthen my prior knowledge and interests in anthropogenic disturbances and conservation (especially in education), while also helping refine my future research projects before obtaining a masters or PhD. I have never been to the southeast of Madagascar, so I am eager to see how this journey will help transform me not only as a researcher but as a person. I cant wait to start this new journey of 2018 in Kianjavato with its cohort members!