Compassion and Conservation in the Time of Corona

First published in Sanctuary Asia, Vol. 40 No. 4, April 2020

Cara Tejpal lists conservation organisations that are working to provide relief to the families of forest guards, indigenous communities and other impacted-citizens during the ongoing COVID-19 lockdown.

Madhya Pradesh Tiger Foundation Society

Photo courtesy: Deepanker Mukherji

Wildlife writers Prerna Singh Bindra, Pranav Capila and Vaishali Rawat are rallying support for the daily wage workers and contracted staff of Madhya Pradesh’ Protected Areas. These men and women of our frontline forest force walk a lonely beat, protecting the magnificent natural heritage of central India. With contractual work coming to a halt and daily wages drying up, they need our help to procure essential items, and care for their families.

Donations for forest staff welfare are being channelled to the MP Tiger Foundation Society, and coordinated by Deputy Conservator of Forest (Wildlife) Mr. Rajnish Singh. Online donations can be made at:

MP Tiger Foundation Society
Savings Account
State Bank of India
IFSC Code: SBIN0001308
UPI: MPTFS@idfcbank

Prerna Singh Bindra and Vaishali Rawat are both previous Sanctuary Award winners, and Pranav Capila is a regular and respected contributor to Sanctuary Asia magazine.

Last Wilderness Foundation

Mahilabai Pardhi, who was one of the winners of the Sanctuary Wildlife Award 2019, has worked extensively to shift her tribe's traditional practice of hunting.

The dynamic team of Last Wilderness Foundation is known for their outstanding work with central India’s Pardhi and Baiga communities.  With tourism at a standstill, community members are now struggling to make ends meet. The Pardhis and Baigas have a long and checkered conservation history, but with support from the likes of LWF they have steadily grown to be eco-tourism pioneers and conservation stakeholders. 

Donations to LWF are tax deductable and will be utilised to procure essential items for Pardhi and Baiga families whose income has dried up. The initiative is being coordinated by Bhavna Menon, and donations can be channelled to:

Last Wilderness Foundation
Current Account
Axis Bank
IFSC Code: UTIB0000653
Worli Naka, Mumbai

In December 2019, two members of the Pardhi tribe won a joint Sanctuary Wildlife Service Award for their contribution to community outreach and conservation. You can read about Kheer Babu and Mahila Bai Pardhi, here.

Terra Conscious

Puja Mitra, Co-founder of Terra Conscious and professional conservation practitioner.

Marine conservation may be their forte, but the folks at Terra Conscious are proving their humanitarian mettle in these trying times. Through the lockdown, this Goa-based conservation enterprise is working to procure and deliver essential items to migrant workers, low income families, the elderly, the differently abled, and even animal rescue workers. 

You can help Terra Conscious by making “in-kind” donations or directly paying the vendors that they’ve tied up with. To help this dream marine team in their relief efforts, please write to

Puja Mitra, Founder of Terra Conscious, won a Sanctuary Wildlife Service Award in 2018 for her pioneering marine conservation work in Goa. 

Green Hub

Helmed by the ever-inspiring Rita Banerji, Green Hub is a community video documentation centre for youth from the North East Region (NER) of India. During this time, the Green Hub team is working in collaboration with the North East Network and their own alumni to provide rations to vulnerable communities such as daily wage workers, remote rural residents, single women, and forest frontline staff in areas such as the Pakke Tiger Reserve and the Singchung Bugun Village Community Reserve. Contributions towards their relief work can be made to:

North East Network
Savings Account
State Bank of India
IFSC Code: SBIN0016927
Chandmari, Tezpur, Assam

An award-winning wildlife filmmaker, Rita Banerji heads Dusty Foot Productions and Green Hub. She is a previous contributor to Sanctuary magazine. You can read more about her, here.

Green Lyfe Foundation  

Established by Green Hub alumnus Rajen Tachang,  Seijosa-based Green Lyfe Foundation works on conservation initiatives in and around the Pakke Tiger Reserve. At this time, Rajen and his team are procuring and delivering food supplies to low-income families that reside near the tiger reserve. Contributions to this wonderful community effort can be made at:

Green Lyfe Foundation
State Bank of India
IFSC Code: SBIN 0007840
Google Pay/UPI: 6909181507

Rajen is personally coordinating this effort and can be reached at

Devalsari Samiti


Nestled in the embrace of the Garhwal, Himalaya, Devalsari Samiti is a homegrown organisation that promotes conservation, ecotourism and community welfare. Members of the samiti have conducted social surveys, and identified 200 families in the district that are in dire need of food and essential supplies.  This small organisation has been able to raise funds to provide relief packages to 30 of these families on their own steam, but is looking for support from Sanctuary readers to help the remaining 170 families. 

Donations towards their relief efforts can be made at:

Devalsari Paryavaran Sanrakshan
State Bank of India
IFSC Code: SBIN0004529

Arun Gour, Founder of Devalsari Samiti, won a Sanctuary Wildlife Service Award in 2019 for his community conservation work. Learn more about this young leader and his organisation, here.

This list is a work in progress, and we will continue to add to it as and when legitimate relief work by conservation organisations are brough to our attention. We also welcome you to donate to Sanctuary Nature Foundation through our online donation portal with the faith that funds will be redistributed to genuine relief efforts.

If you make a contribution to any of the organisations mentioned on this list, please drop a line to so that we may keep a tally of the funds that are raised. If you belong to a conservation organisation that is engaged in COVID-19 relief work and would like to feature on this list, please write to 

Cara Tejpal is a writer and wildlife conservationist. She is the Director of Conservation Initiatives for Sanctuary Nature Foundation.

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