Born Free’s Living with Tigers programme supports a network of Indian NGOs to help conserve wild tigers and find solutions to human-wildlife conflict across the Satpuda region of central India.
Living with Tigers was formed in 2004 by Born Free and the University of Oxford’s Wildlife Conservation Research Unit (WildCRU). The idea was to restructure pre-existing tiger conservation projects in the Satpuda landscape into a network of partners to reduce duplication of effort, improve communication and dialogue, and build scientific rigour and impact.
Living with Tigers is now the largest partnership of NGOs working on tiger conservation in India.
Satpuda is a stronghold for India’s remaining wild tigers. The forests of Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra have seven tiger reserves connected by forest corridors, which allow tigers to roam freely across hundreds of miles of their natural habitat.
Living with Tigers works across these reserves to conserve wild tigers.
Living with Tigers has seven Indian NGOs working in partnership with Born Free and WildCRU: the Bombay Natural History Society, Bavaan, Conservation Action Trust, The Corbett Foundation, Nature Conservation Society Amravati, Satpuda Foundation, and Tiger Research and Conservation Trust (TRACT). Born Free provides funding to the Indian NGOs who make up the Living with Tigers network, so that they can carry out their work.
The seven NGOs work to protect wild tigers and encourage human-wildlife co-existence by involving the local community in initiatives, as well as improving their livelihoods.
Key projects include a Mobile Health Unit which regularly visits rural villages so that local people don’t have to travel long distances to visit the doctor or hospital; a Mobile Education Unit which visits local schools to teach children about wildlife and co-existence; bio-gas initiatives that provide a free fuel source to homes so people don’t have to enter the forest to collect firewood; women empowerment schemes that encourage women to earn their own money; and local employment opportunities such as training women to be tourist guides, or setting up a workshop for local people to make and sell bamboo products.
Over the next few weeks, we will be sharing the work of Living with Tigers, and explain how each initiative is promoting co-existence.