– Madagascar –
Lalao Aigrette, graduated from the Institut Halieutique de Sciences Marines, University of Toliara in Madagascar. Lalao is the National Technical Advisor for Mangroves at the NGO, Blue Ventures. Passionate about conservation, she has been recognised as an IUCN Natural-born Heroine for her outstanding contribution to conservation in her home country of Madagascar. Lalao has been working with the local coastal communities for 13 years, promoting nature and human rights-based solutions to preserve and sustainably manage mangrove forests, a productive but threatened ecosystem. One of the achievements of which Lalao is most proud is the validation of the Tahiry Honko, the world’s largest community-led mangrove carbon conservation project and first mangrove carbon sequestration project in Madagascar, after years of work at the community level. As the Malagasy proverb says, “firaisan-kina no hery” (there is strength in unity), Lalao’s ambition is to promote and strengthen women’s participation and empowerment in community conservation commensurate with the socio-economic role they play in their communities.