KTK-BELT’s mission is to catalyze new models of biodiversity conservation and environmental learning in eastern Nepal. The idea is to give a framework to local farmers to become ‘professors’ of the Vertical University, to share their indigenous knowledge while also physically conserving threatened species and landscapes. It is currently implementing a five-year project entitled “Creating Biodiversity Corridors for conservation, Education and Livelihood from Koshi Tappu to Kanchenjunga in Eastern Nepal” after entering into an agreement with Social Welfare Council on October 3, 2019, in five districts (Morang, Sunsari, Dhankuta, Taplejung, Sankhuwasabha).
KTK-BELT works in concert with nonprofit companies (a hybrid non-profit making company) registered under the Nepal Company Act, which it helps establish and nurture. Our core partner is the “Vertical Biodiversity Fund” and we have various local “Learning Grounds” partners as well. Each Learning Grounds, governed by a diverse local Board and monitored by the Social Welfare Council (SWC) of the Nepal Government, owns its own biodiversity-rich conservation land base, which it holds in perpetuity in order to prevent ecosystem fragmentation and deforestation. Youth Fellows and BELT Farmers, trained and supported by KTK-BELT staff, run and administer the Learning Grounds and build capacity across the 8,000-meter vertical gradient through peer-to-peer, upstream-downstream collaboration.