Red panda and Tourism in the Darjeeling Himalayas
The beautiful, fragile and biologically rich landscape of Singhalila National Park in Darjeeling, India has views of the world’s highest mountains and is home to the threatened red panda. Declared a national park in 1992/93, there was a shift in community livelihoods from cattle husbandry to tourism, which increased by 250% in the first 10 years. Currently 70% of local communities depend on tourism for their livelihoods, however challenges such as littering along trekking trails and at destinations are threatening wildlife habitats and the sustainability of tourism in Singhalila. Local guides, accompanying visitors, are not adequately trained to teach visitors about the park environment and their responsibilities. This project will carry out 10 awareness raising and clean-up events in 5 different locations, establish waste management booths at 3 entry/exit points to the park and train 10 trainers who will in turn train 50 guides in reducing litter in the park from their visitors and respecting the park while visiting it
Red Panda Habitat. Image Tenzing Sherpa
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Trekking in the Himalayas. Image Samuel Thomas
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We are hugely grateful for the support of the European Outdoor Conservation Association, without whose support we could never have realised such an ambitious project.
Hugo Tagholm, Surfers Against Sewage