Friday, February 28, 2014

Activity Update January 2014: Pench Maharashtra

Team: Saket Agasti - Assistant Conservation Officer
            Bandu Uikey, Dilip Lanjewar – Field Assistants


  • One voluntary work project to build a check dam at Datizira Beat, West Pench
  • One anti-plastic programme in the buffer zone area of Pench Tiger Reserve
  • Field assistant Bandu Uikey, Dilip Lanjewar joined Forest Department staff on anti-poaching patrols six times
  • One nature awareness rally on Republic Day at Ghatpendari village
  • Inauguration of Satpuda Foundation’s Medical Health Service at Nagpur on 27 January
  • Environment education programme in 13 villages in which we addressed 428  students
  • Six film shows on nature and wildlife – viewed by 300 students
  • Assisted 2 unemployed youth to get training in hospitality industry
  • Organized village meetings at Ghoti, Dhawlapur, Shiladevi to form Village Eco Development Committee (VEDC)
  • Assisted EDC  of Ghatpendari in distributing 33 LPG connections  to villagers of Ghatpendari and Salai

On January 23 Field Assistant Bandu Uikey organized a voluntary work project programme at Datizira beat in West Pench. Villagers and VEDC members teamed up with Bandu to build a check dam on a stream inside the jungle, around 5 km from Ghatpendari village. The water body will be useful for wildlife in summer season, when there is a scarcity of water. Photos below.

On January 12, Field Assistant Dilip Lanjewar guided a team of 30 students from Pipariya on a drive to collect plastic/polythene litter from the road linking the village with Sillari. As there is forest on both sides of the road, there is a danger that wildlife, which is frequently seen in this area, could eat the plastic bags. Photos below.

On January 1, 10 and 24, Dilip joined members of the village eco-development committees (VEDC) of Wagholi, Sillari and Khapa respectively on patrols in the forest. No illegal activity was observed by the team on these patrols. Photo below.

Similarly, Bandu Uikey joined patrols on January 5, 12 and 19 in West Pench. In these patrols, besides VEDC members, there was also local staff from the Forest Department and members of the Special Tiger Protection Force (STPF). The teams covered the South beat, Dhatizira, Saat Talao and East beat of West Pench region. Below: VEDC patrolling near Ghatpendari.

On January 26, the Forest Department and VEDC, Ghatpendari organized a programme to distribute 33 cooking gas connections to villagers of Ghatpendari and Salai. The connections and cylinder refills are provided to the villagers at 25 percent of cost to induce them to shift away from firewood and reduce pressure on forests. We helped identify the beneficiaries, assisted the villagers in preparing the required documents and explained to the villagers how to use the stoves and the precautions which need to be taken. Our field assistant Bandu handed over some of the connections personally. Photo below.

On January 8, we assisted the Forest Department in conducting a meeting at Ghoti to explain to the villagers the benefits of forming a VEDC and from having a micro-plan. Similar meetings were held at Salai, Dhawlapur and Shiladevi on January 11, 22 and 25 respectively. Below: Meeting at Ghoti.

On January 27, our new ambulance was flagged off at Nagpur by Chief Wildlife Warden SWH Naqvi and PCCF (Wildlife) Sarjan Bhagat. This ambulance will be used to provide mobile health services to villagers in Pench (M.P. and Maharashtra), Navegaon-Nagzira and Tadoba-Andhari Tiger Reserves. Inauguration photos below.

Environmental Education Programmes

In January, our team conducted environment education programmes in 13 schools in our area of operations.

Environment education class at Ghatpendari

Nature game, Pipariya

On January 9 Dilip and Nikhil led 40 children from Pipariya on a nature trail in the jungle adjoining the village. On the trail, Dilip and Nikhil spoke to the children about the importance of trees and wildlife in our eco system. A similar nature trail was organized for 8 students of Ghoti on January 19. Photos below.

Pipariya - Asst. Education Officer Nikhil Saryam explaining the
importance of trees

Pipariya - Dilip Lanjewar with children on a nature trail

IT Education Programme

We are running IT education programme at Sawara and Pipariya in Pench (Maharashtra).

Employment Cell

Pace Foundation has an institute at Aurangabad where it trains youths in various livelihood skills. Pace Foundation has an arrangement with Pench Tiger Conservation Foundation to train youths in our area of operations. Pench Tiger Conservation Foundation, which funds the youths’ training, had invited us to identify suitable candidates form our area of operations. During January, we identified 2 youths who have been sent to Aurangabad for training in skills related to the hospitality industry. The 2 youths have been accepted and will undergo training for 3 months after which Pace Foundation will assist them in getting suitable jobs.

Education Van Programme

There were 6 film shows on nature and wildlife conservation in January.

Film screening at Kadbikheda

Sillari children watching wildlife film