KTK-BELT Project is a platform for farmers, teachers, designers and environmentalists working together to build community-based biodiversity conservation strategies for the eastern region of Nepal. Local farmers possess deeply embedded place-based knowledge of their environments and, therefore, have the capacity to steward them. Working directly with a local farmers cooperative, Yangshila Permaculture Learning Grounds (YPLG), we’re building a 100-acre community land trust, encompassing 20 different critical ecological habitats spanning the range of 180 to 1950 masl, containing more than 500 native plant species, as a strategy for restoring forests in the eastern region of Nepal and building ‘living classrooms’ to sustain indigenous knowledge. With a focus on habitat conservation, place-based education and sustainable livelihoods diversification, we are developing Yangshila into the eastern region’s first ‘vertical university.’
“It is not the strongest or the most intelligent who will survive but those who can best manage change.”
“To see a world in a grain of sand,
And a heaven in a wild flower,
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand,
An eternity in an hour.”
“We need the tonic of wildness...At the same time that we are earnest to explore and learn all things, we require that all things be mysterious and unexplorable, that land and sea be indefinitely wild, unsurveyed and unfathomed by us because unfathomable. We can never have enough of nature."
Inspired by the possibility of activating the hidden layer of indigenous knowledge and converting the landscape into a ‘Vertical University’ for the entire eastern region, the KTK-BELT project was launched in 2013. To harness local implementation capacity, Yangshila Permaculture Learning Grounds (YPLG), a farmers’ cooperative was created in 2013, and 100 acres of land was acqu...