Unreached People: Tanala
The Tanala people, also called Antanala, live in the inland forests of southeastern Madagascar. Their name actually means ‘people of the forest’. With a population of 1,200,000 the Tanala represent 6% of the population of Madagascar. They are skilled woodsmen, food gatherers, and hunters. They trade beeswax, honey, and other forest products and grow rice as a staple food. Their traditional ‘slash-and-burn’ agricultural methods are being discouraged by the central Madagascan government, instead they’re being encouraged to use more modern methods to grow corn, yams and coffee. Living conditions in the smaller villages can be very difficult. Many of these small villages are hard to reach and often people are suspicious and afraid of foreigners, as well as of Malagasy from other people groups.