They are the heart of red panda conservation

Forest Guardians are local people who are paid to monitor and protect red panda habitat, as well as educate communities. The payment they receive supports their families and their experience as a Forest Guardian® helps them build capacity for sustainable income and environmental stewardship.

Support Sustainable Livelihoods

People, like you, who support RPN's work on a monthly basis are known as Panda Guardians.

Join the Panda Guardian team of monthly donors today!



Forest Guardians work in western Nepal



Total number of Forest Guardians



Forest Guardians work in eastern Nepal

Meet Our Forest Guardians

Thank You To Our Organizational Sponsors!


Rupan Tamang
Location: Lungrupa, Panchthar district
Community Forest: Makaibari Thulodund 
Forest Guardian since: 2014

Rupan is passionate about saving red pandas through ecotourism.

Sponsored by: 



Bimala Moktan
Location: Prangbung, Panchthar district
Community Forest: Jaljale
Forest Guardian since: 2015

“The need to save our forests and the wildlife that lives there is no longer deniable.” Read more in Nobody Ever Said, “Saving Red Pandas is Easy”

Sponsored by: 



Ramesh Rai
Location: Sidin, Panchthar district
Community Forest:  Kanya Devi  
Forest Guardian since: 2014

Ramesh enjoys anti-poaching and is intersted in learning about camera traps. He is also a  farmer who supplies organic vegetables to his village. Ramesh loves teaching his children about red pandas.  

Sponsored by:



Ngima Dawa Sherpa
Location: Maimajhuwa, Ilam district
Community Forest: Padma Sambhaw
Forest Guardian since: 2014

Ngima has been instrumental in a number of projects including mammal camera trapping in the PIT corridor, Plant A Red Panda Home, and our GPS-satellite collar study as a red panda tracker.

Sponsored by: 



Kalpana Rokaya
Location: Mudkechula, Dolpa district
Community Forest: Aahale Narehung
Forest Guardian since: 2021

Kalpana was one of the first women to be hired as Forest Guardians in western Nepal's Dolpa district. 

Sponsored by:



Surat Kumar Rai
Location: Memeng, Panchthar district
Community Forest: Aahale Narehung
Forest Guardian since: 2014

Surat enjoy conducting community surveys and attending capacity building training. 

Sponsored by:



Prem Dorjee Sherpa
Location: Jogmai, Ilam district
Community Forest: Chipchipe
Forest Guardian since: 2014

Prem is a motivated Forest Guardian who is involved in numerous activities from installing camera traps to collecting red panda pellets for s genetic study. 

Sponsored by:



Surya Bhattarai
Location: Mamangkhe, Taplejung district
Community Forest: Sudap Khola
Forest Guardian since: 2014

Surya has been trained in forest fire management. He also led awareness workshops in his community and ecotrips, collected red panda pellets for genetic research and was involved in Chinese pangolin research. 

Sponsored by: 



Shanti Malla
Location: Mahawai, Kalikot district
Community Forest: Himkalika
Forest Guardian since: 2017

“We protect forests and wildlife for our children. If there are no trees, there is no life.” Read more in No Trees, No Red Pandas—No life.

Sponsored by: 



Som Bahadur Rai
Location: Memeng, Panchthar district
Community Forest: Aahale Narehung
Forest Guardian since: 2017

Som is interested in politics so he can help support sustainable development and red panda conservation in Panchthar district. 

Sponsored by:



Shanti Budha
Location: Mudkechula, Dolpa district
Community Forest: Nagdunga
Forest Guardian since: 2021

Shanti is a member of a local mother group and is involved in conservation awareness campaigns and advocacy efforts, red panda monitoring, and anti-poaching. 

Sponsored by: 



Surendra Kumar Bantawa Rai
Location: Sidin, Panchthar district
Community Forest: Kanya Devi
Forest Guardian since: 2014

Surendra has been involved in anti-poaching and red panda collar study. His daughter has received two red panda conservation scholarships!

Sponsored by:



Ramesh Rai
Location: Chyangthapu, Panchthar district
Community Forest: Sunakhari
Forest Guardian since: 2014

Ramesh has seen numerous red pandas in the forest he works in. He was once the secretary of Sunakhari Community Forest.

Sponsored by:



Chandra Bir Rai
Location: Prangbung, Panchthar district
Community Forest: Kanya Devi
Forest Guardian since: 2014

Chandrahas been involved in installing camera traps and collecting red panda pellets for s genetic study. 

Sponsored by:



Bishal Gurung
Location: Jamuna, Ilam district
Community Forest: Choyatar
Forest Guardian since: 2017

Bishal is the youngest male member of the Forest Guardian team in the Panchthar-Ilam-Taplejung (PIT) corridor of eastern Nepal. He is interested in wildlife photography and ecotourism. 

Sponsored by:



Arpan Rai 
Location: Maimajhuwa, Ilam district
Community Forest: Santapur
Forest Guardian since: 2022

Arpan is very upbeat and skilled in technologies such as GPS and camera trap operation. He is involved in red panda habitat monitoring and anti-poaching patrolling, and conducting dog surveys. Arpan enjoys tracking red pandas in the wild and aspires to be a nature guide and involved in ecotourism. 

Sponsored by:



Manju Gurung
Location: Maimajhuwa, Ilam district
Community Forest: Chintapu
Forest Guardian since: 2021

Manju is part of a growing group of female Forest Guardians. She has a three-year-old daughter who she wants to inspire to pursue her dreams. Manju believes that women in rural Nepal can advance beyond the barriers of gender inequality and make a huge impact on the world. Sustainable livelihood opportunities like the FG program are important for women in Nepal. 

Sponsored by:


Sponsor a Forest Guardian!

Interested in sponsoring a Forest Guardian? Please contact Terrance Lee, Deputy Director, at (877) 854-2391 Ext. 101 or

Help us save the Red Panda, today!