Père Henri de Laulanié, a French Jesuit priest, founded the Association Tefy Saina in 1990 with two self-taught agronomists, Sébastien Rafaralahy and Justin Léonard Rabenandrasana
After their mentor's death in 1995, Rafaralahy and Rabenandrasana
, now both in their sixties, continued the work of the farmer priest.
was born to a farming family in Ambohimasoa in 1939.After secondary school in the provincial center of Fianarantsoa, Rabenandrasana was awarded a bachelor's degree in philosophy from Antananarivo University.In 1968, Rabenandrasana was appointed director of the Centre Artisanal de Promotion Rurale in Fianarantsoa.
became acquainted with Laulanié, who occasionally taught agriculture and rural economy.In 1979, when his friend Rafaralahy moved to CENAM in Antananarivo, Rabenandrasana joined as deputy director.Rabenandrasana
introduced Laulanié to CENAM
, where he
collaborated on various projects for rural development."In 1990, Père de Laulanié was getting older," says Rabenandrasana
, "and he
felt no one understood him or the scope of what he
had found out about rice cultivation in Madagascar."
...Rabenandrasana and Rafaralahy left CENAM to found Association Tefy Saina with Laulanié.
...Later, Rabenandrasana became secretary-general of Tefy Saina and Rafaralahy its president.
Word of mouth about the SRI results was very positive, but Rafaralahy and Rabenandrasana
lacked the scientific studies necessary for legitimacy.
"When I told Rafaralahy and Rabenandrasana
we needed to raise yields around the Ranomafana National Park without damaging the forest," recounts Uphoff, "they said in French that even I could understand: pas de problème.
Today, Rafaralahy and Rabenandrasana
spend most of their time visiting farms or teaching courses at the experimental paddies they use for demonstration outside Antananarivo
, and making field visits all over the country.
Until now, SRI has not had as much direct impact on rice production in Madagascar as Rafaralahy and Rabenandrasana
SRI has become a worldwide movement, yet the technique would have died with Père de Laulanié
in Madagascar without the efforts of Rafaralahy and Rabenandrasana