In Central Asia, the Land of Snow Leopard (LOSL) network uniquely empowers both Traditional Ecological Knowledge (TEK) and modern science in community-led conservation. Rooted in indigenous wisdom, it unites over 100 committed members who view themselves as guardians of Mother Earth.
This year, LOSL modified the Nomadic Nature Trunks (NNT) program, a traveling classroom for children. Network Elders and Indigenous Cultural Practitioners (ICPs) enriched the program with spiritual and cultural elements, adapting lessons to honor the cultural significance and historical role snow leopards have in each region.
Alina Zhenishbekova, a founding member of the LOSL Youth Wing and coordinator of the NNT program in Kyrgyzstan, emphasizes the profound influence of incorporating traditional knowledge into environmental education. According to Alina, integration extends beyond acquiring knowledge, it strengthens cultural bonds, promotes mutual respect among participants, and provides invaluable insights into our local ecosystems.