Youths taking up nature guide trainingAs many as 20 people, including three women, received the training provided by Parsa National Park last month.
Elisha Mulmi, a resident of Jitpur Simara Sub-metropolis-5 in Bara district, is a first year bachelor’s student at the Hetauda-based Institute of Forestry. The 19-year-old recently received a weeklong nature guide training conducted by the Parsa National Park. She took the training to gain practical knowledge about forests and nature, she said.
“The training was an opportunity to get on-field information regarding natural vegetation and wildlife which is essential for an aspiring nature guide,” said Mulmi.
Debi Magar had some free time after graduating from grade 12 so she too decided to join the training. The nature guide training has been a boon for the 19-year-old girl to utilise her leisure time and get the opportunity of learning new things. “I was free after passing grade 12. I received the nature guide training to learn new things about forest, wildlife and nature,” said Magar.
Pujan Shrestha, aged 21, of Subarnapur in Thori Municipality-5 is another recipient of the nature guide training. He has always been very interested in the study of forests and wildlife since his early childhood. “I have a deep interest in working in the field of forest and wildlife. My father is a conservationist. The nature guide training has been a great opportunity for me. I plan to run a home-stay or a resort and work in the tourism sector,” said Shrestha, stating that the weeklong training fulfilled his ardent wish to watch nature and wildlife closely.
Many youths like Mulmi, Magar and Shrestha are taking up nature guide training in Parsa. As many as 20 youths, including three women, received the training that was provided by the Parsa National Park last month. According to Tikaram Giri, one of the two trainers involved in the nature guide training, all the participants were below 35 years of age.
“The trainees were very enthusiastic and participatory. We took the participants to the forests two times a day and provided field training. They closely watched wildlife and birds and learned to identify the footprints of various wild animals,” said Giri. According to him, the trainees were taught about their duties and responsibilities before they took up their jobs as nature guides.
The Madhes Province government declared the Thori area of Parsa district as a tourist area a few months ago. Such training is expected to benefit the local youths.
“The local people, mainly the youth, can run homestays or start a hotel business after receiving such training. Tourism entrepreneurship should not be confined only to Chitwan, particularly in Sauraha. The youths should be involved in tourism where there are prospects,” said Giri, claiming that the nature guide training was quite helpful in encouraging the youths interested in nature tourism.
Parsa National Park, the country’s youngest national park, had provided similar training six years ago but almost all of the training recipients then did not involve themselves in tourism activities. According to chief conservation officer at the park Manoj Kumar Sah, the participants of the nature guide training were selected by the consumers’ committee of the park this time hoping that they will be involved in tourism-related activities. “The national park aims to promote tourism in the area by providing such training to aspiring tourism entrepreneurs and tourist guides. We plan to provide similar training next year too with the objective of enhancing the number of trained nature guides,” said Sah.