Kyrgyz Traditional Ecological Knowledge Underpinning Community-Based Snow Leopard and Habitat Protection

Objective of the project
Conservation and increase of the snow leopard population in Kyrgyzstan, improvement of its habitat through the revival of Kyrgyz traditional knowledge and raising awareness of the population about rare species of animals in the Northern and Western Tien Shan with the involvement of local communities in their protection.

The project is funded by the Silicon Valley Community Foundation, USA (SVCF) with consulting support from the Christensen Foundation, USA.

Location of the project:
Talas region Talas region Kalbinskiy AA and Chui region Keminskiy region Chon-Keminskiy AA

Terms of project implementation:
November 2015 - November 2016

Project partners:
Talas Territorial Administration of the State Agency for Environmental Protection and Forestry under the Government of the Kyrgyz Republic;
Talas Regional State Administration of the Kyrgyz Republic;
Local government bodies of pilot communities;
Secretariat of the Global Snow Leopard and Ecosystems Program;
District departments of public education of Talas and Kemin districts of the Ministry of Education and Science of the Kyrgyz Republic;
Center for support of civil initiatives of the Talas region "Aikol"

Project participants:
Pastoral network "Kyrgyz el akyl kazyna"
Local community of Kalbinskiy AA, Talas district, Talas region
Local community of Chon-Kemin AA, Keminsky district, Chui region
State Natural Park "Chon-Kemin"
State natural park "Besh-Tash"

Main activities:
1. Collection and analysis of Kyrgyz traditional ecological knowledge (TEC) on the peaceful coexistence of local communities with the snow leopard and its habitat through the involvement of members of the Pastoral Network "Kyrgyz El Akyl Kazyna" (KEAK) in Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, as well as abroad in places of concentration snow leopard;
2. Involvement of two pilot communities in Talas and Chui oblasts to form initiatives to create Zhamaats for the protection and protection of such natural resources as the snow leopard and its habitat;
3. Release of informational material on the snow leopard and its habitat based on TER, such as folklore, fairy tales, legends, as well as stories of TK keepers about the importance of the snow leopard for the conservation of biodiversity;
4. Carrying out an information campaign in pilot communities through the organization of a summer camp for youth - winners of school competitions with the involvement of specialists from National Parks; exchange visits and a local festival with the organization of KEAK exhibitions and the results of school competitions; creation of video materials with the participation of CEAC members; work with local and republican media;
5. Conducting a Snow Leopard Festival in Bishkek with the participation of the KR Snow Leopard Secretariat, partner organizations, the KEAK pastoral network, school competition winners, representatives of two pilot communities to raise awareness at the national level, local community initiatives for snow leopard conservation.

Expected results of the project:
The RDF will release, according to the results,   research on the TEZ on the snow leopard and its habitat, which will increase the population's attention to this problem, help children and young people to form a respectful attitude towards the wealth of their native land;
Based on the results of its work with the population, the RDF will release a social video and a series of video interviews to disseminate information about the protection of the snow leopard and its habitat;

RDF will involve pilot communities in the project to create local initiatives, where it is planned to form a Jamaat for the protection of the snow leopard and its habitat;

RDF will conduct an information campaign to raise awareness of the population of pilot communities about the snow leopard and its habitat, which will lead to the creation of prerequisites for the responsibility of people for the preservation of the natural resources of the local landscape;
RDF will hold contests with the participation of students from local schools, for the winners of which it will organize a youth summer camp with the involvement of representatives of National Parks;

RDF organizes a local festival, which will present the results of children's competitions, information materials on TK, a KEAK exhibition, discussion of local initiatives to preserve the snow leopard and its habitat;

RDF organizes exchange visits between representatives of the two pilot communities, which will help develop local initiatives in the conservation of the snow leopard and its habitat;

RDF will hold a Festival in Bishkek with the involvement of the Snow Leopard Secretariat to disseminate the TEZ, raise public awareness of the need to preserve and protect the snow leopard, and improve measures to preserve its ecosystems at the national level.
Traditional Knowledge