Community Based Conservation
The majority of hill tracts in Northeast India are community owned and managed. We work with communities to support them in their efforts towards securing forests and wildlife, understand and strengthen positive people–nature relationships, and help develop nature-friendly practices.
We work with community leaders to preserve and secure forests and wildlife via traditional community governance systems. Communities we have worked with have set aside lands as forests, instituted official hunting bans, proposed Community Reserves, applied for carbon credits and other PES schemes.
We engage in community-based bio-monitoring, to document and assess biodiversity in community forests. With the community, we have placed camera traps, used sign surveys and undertaken bio -acoustic monitoring to get insights into species that reside in village forests. Species records are shared with the community via awareness programs or material.
We also assess people-nature relationships, in the form of community attitudes towards forests and wildlife, their dependence on forests for wellbeing, and ecosystem services. Our work shows strong dependence on forests and recognition of essential needs as nature's contributions to people, and enhanced community resilience with more subsistence practices.
We support practices that are nature-friendly, and can achieve coupled goals of biodiversity conservation and human wellbeing. For instance, we have distributed fuel-efficient stoves in extremely remote villages; and help develop low-carbon, wildlife-friendly eco-tourism. We hold programs that focus on nurturing the next generation of conservationists.