The ethnic Tibetan areas of China present difficult challenges to sustainable development because of their remoteness, environmental fragility, lack of social services, and fluid economic and political conditions. In response, TMI has been implementing the Tibetan Plateau Development Program (TPDP) in the Tibetan areas of China since 2004. Prior to this project, TMI ran the Peak Enterprise Program, the first private sector development initiative in Tibet’s history. In the late 1980s, TMI worked with local Tibetan authorities to form the Qomolangma (Everest) Nature Preserve on the Tibet side of Mt. Everest. After establishing the preserve, TMI worked to develop a bilateral agreement between the Dutch government and the PRC which created the Qomolangma (Everest) Conservation Program.
The major focus areas of our current work are:
• Livelihood improvement of herders and farmers.
• Rangeland conservation and management.
• Handicraft development.
• Conservation of cultural heritage.
The work consists of core activities and sub-grants, which are designed to significantly extend the program’s impact. Sub-granting is designed to support a variety of capable local community groups, domestic and international non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and relevant government institutions, which lack the financial and technical resources to implement projects successfully on their own. With the wealth of experience gained over many years of project implementation, TMI has worked intensively with these partners to pilot effective solutions to the problems and challenges faced by rural Tibetan populations. Currently, we are moving from “pilot to policy”, scaling up the impact of earlier pilot projects and engaging decision-makers at all levels to generate effective support for the replication of successful models.