Snow Leopard Conservancy


The Snow Leopard Conservancy–India Trust works to protect (among other animals) the snow leopard—a globally endangered species with only 200 to 600 individuals left in the higher reaches of the Himalayas. The conservancy’s Himalayan Homestay initiative creates livelihoods for local people, offsetting and compensating livestock losses, increasing the stake of local people in conserving wildlife through wildlife tourism, reducing human wildlife conflict, and helping reverse a centuries old tradition of hunting snow leopards and wolves.

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Since 2002, over 130 families have been trained to offer 165 homestays in 40 villages across Ladakh—10 per cent of all homestay income is invested in village conservation. The Trust has sought to maintain traditional Ladakhi values, by housing guests in existing traditional rooms and serving Ladakhi food. The model is being considered for replication in five countries.