Felicitations galore at WWF Nepal’s 25th Anniversary
At an event organized in Kathmandu, WWF Nepal felicitated two organizations and three individuals for their exemplary contribution to biodiversity conservation. Langtang Area Conservation Concern Society, Rasuwa and Shreeramnagar Buffer Zone User Committee, Bardia were felicitated with the Conservation Awards in the organization category, while Dal Bahadur Gurung from Palpa, Manoj Poudel from Kapilvastu and Shilshila Acharya from Kathmandu were felicitated with the Conservation Awards in the individual category.
In addition to the Conservation Awards, a special Silver Jubilee Honorary Award was presented to the National Parks and Wildlife Conservation Directorate of Nepal Army and the Department of National Parks and Wildlife Conservation for their leadership role in the conservation and protection of biodiversity in Nepal.
The final awardees were selected from the nominations received by an independent panel of judges. The awards hold a citation and cash prize of NRs. 50,000 for individuals and NRs. 100,000 for organizations.
“WWF Nepal’s 25th anniversary is a celebration of the power of Together Possible,” stated Dr. Ghana S Gurung, Country Representative of WWF Nepal. “We have grown to become a trusted partner of the government, conservation agencies, local communities and our supporters to deliver conservation impact together in Nepal. The future holds new promise and opportunities as we continue to work together towards sustainable green infrastructure, zero poaching and transit, and responsible tourism while engaging young leaders in conservation.”
Nine students were also awarded scholarships to pursue higher level studies in natural resource management. Ms. Phurpa Sherpa and Ms. Sujita Dhakal were awarded the Chandra Gurung Memorial Fellowship. Likewise, Jillian Bowling Schlaepfer Memorial Scholarship was awarded to Mr. Bibek Belbase and Mr. Sanup Chaudhary, Jennifer Headley Memorial Scholarship to Ms. Anusha Shrestha and Ms. Hasina Chaudhary, Mingma Norbu Sherpa Memorial Scholarship to Mr. Tasi Topgyal Tamang and the WWF Nepal Conservation Memorial Scholarship to Ms. Binita Sunar and Ms. Apeksha Dhakal.
The Memorial Scholarships were instituted in 2007 to honor the 24 individuals who lost their lives in the tragic helicopter incident of 23 September 2006 and their commitment to preserve Nepal’s rich natural heritage.
Speaking at the event, Dr. Roberto Troya, Vice President WWF US Managed Program Offices said, “Nepal is doing things right, leading by example and making a big difference in conservation. We want to learn from you and adopt your experiences.”
WWF Nepal’s 25th anniversary was celebrated with the theme ‘Together Possible’ to mark the role of partnerships in helping Nepal achieve conservation impact over the years. Honorable Shakti Bahadur Basnet, Minister of Forests & Environment was the Chief Guest of the event which saw the participation of key stakeholders in conservation including the government, diplomatic agencies, conservation, private sector and civil society organizations, and media.
In his closing remarks, Mr. Basnet while extending his congratulations, encouraged WWF Nepal to continue its conservation legacy to touch the grassroots level as Nepal moves into a new federal structure.