Madagascar is recovering from the destructive Cyclone Ava, which struck the country on January 5, 2018. Officials have reported that at least 51 people died and thousands were displaced.

Initial assessments from the branch office in Madagascar indicate that no brothers were killed by the storm. However, at least 45 homes have been damaged or destroyed, as well as 6 Kingdom Halls. The storm also destroyed local crops, which serve as the livelihood for many of the publishers in the country. A Disaster Relief Committee was formed to care for the immediate needs of the affected publishers, which included providing food supplies, clothing, and temporary shelters. Two brothers from the branch office also traveled to the disaster area and held a special meeting with all the families affected by the cyclone to give scriptural encouragement.

The Governing Body facilitates disaster relief efforts, including the relief work in the aftermath of this cyclone, using funds donated to the Witnesses’ global ministry work. We pray that Jehovah will continue to be a secure refuge for our brothers and sisters in Madagascar during this time.—Psalm 9:9, 10

Media Contacts:

International: David A. Semonian, Office of Public Information, +1-845-524-3000

Madagascar: Rinera Rakotomalala, +261-33-37-012-91