Pendeba is a new Tibetan word for “worker who benefits the village.”
Pendebas are local volunteers who improve daily life within China’s protected areas. Future Generations partners with the Tibet Department of Science and Technology and a local non-profit organization known as the Pendeba Society to provide training in:
- primary health
- income generation
- conservation concepts
The Pendeba is the local person whom these remote communities can turn for help. Pendebas:
- Advise and help their neighbors improve health, sanitation, and nutrition in the home
- Help their communities build latrines, dig irrigation ditches, access simple solar lighting and cooking technologies
- Promote conservation concepts and practices
- Promote opportunities for income generation through training in animal husbandry, non-timber forest products, and tourism
The Pendeba Program began in 1994 as a way to link community development with nature conservation in the Qomolangma (Mt. Everest) National Nature Preserve (QNNP). Its purpose was to ensure that local people living within the 318 villages of the QNNP benefitted from nature conservation. Initial training focused on building local skills in primary health.
In 2011, Future Generations partners with the Pendeba Society of the Qomolangma (Mt. Everest) National Nature Preserve. Future Generations China works to establish new Pendeba Societies in the Four Great Rivers region of southeastern Tibet.
More than 700 Pendebas have been trained both through local-level training and study tours for senior-level Pendebas who serve as trainers and supervisors.
This report by Patrick Brown of the Canadian Broadbasting Corporation highlights the role of Pendbas in community conservation efforts in the Four Great Rivers region: