Action for Indian Elephants
02 Mar 2006
Most of India’s 450 million women live in the countryside. They rarely own land and have little economic power, yet they have the capacity to bring about important long term changes.
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Most of India’s 450 million women live in the countryside. They rarely own land and have little economic power, yet they have the capacity to bring about important long term changes. Conservation charity, the World Land Trust, WLT, is working with its partner organisation, the Wildlife Trust of India, to protect vital habitat for the remaining population of Indian Elephants. The women of Aretika village have joined forces to work with them.
The WLT began raising funds for elephant conservation after they were alerted to their plight by the Wildlife Trust of India, who identified 88 corridors throughout the country, vital for elephants’ safe migration. The challenge is to work with local people to ensure continued protection. India is not short of national parks but its burgeoning population is taking an increasing toll on the wild lands that survive.
In Aretika village a dedicated local women’s Self Help Group is working to help save the threatened elephants that depend on neighbouring forests. They have been collecting seeds and caring for a tree nursery that is vital in restoring the forest, which links two important reserves in Meghalaya. With the upkeep of these safe corridors, the elephants can move freely between reserves, feed over larger areas and breed successfully, securing their survival.
By working with local communities and gaining the support and enthusiasm of the women’s Self Help Group, the World Land Trust’s Elephant Corridor Project is conserving this precious forest area, which contains one of only a few safe crossing points for elephants on the Simsang River in Meghalaya.
Contact: Vivien Burton, World Land Trust, tel: 01986 874422 Website: www.worldlandtrust.org
Photo: Indian Elephant calf © Stacy Manley
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