Results of our work in January 2021

In January the Great Baikal Trail association conducted a huge amount of work. To start with, we had to report on our 2019-2020 presidential grant and wait for results of the 2021 competition. Unfortunately, we did not win the grant this year, but that didn’t keep us from working. Instead, we set new goals and got to work on new tasks.

Our top priority was to find funding for our projects and operations. We launched a donation drive and media campaign to highlight our need for support. We conducted a press conference at the Interfax news agency, where we met with journalists and various media representatives live on television. You can find a whole list of publications and broadcasts here:

  • In addition to donations, we are trying to attract funding from other sources.
  • We already started to work on new applications to the Presidential Grants Fund and the Rostourism grant.
  • We are in discussions with the Need Help foundation and the service Dobro, which is already helping to fund our renovations of springs.
  • • We have held meetings with our partners Podlemorye Zapovednik and Zapovednoye Pribaikalye. We tried to convey the importance of maintaining trails and now we’re awaiting their decision on support for our projects.
  • With colleagues from Irkutsk State Technical University, we discussed developing trails in an urban environment and we invited students to write theses on our organization.
  • Despite problems with funding, we are moving ahead with work on our programs.
  • In January, preparations were in full swing for the winter projects “I want to go to Baikal” on Olkhon Island and in the village Bolshoye Goloustnoe. Our specialists solved administrative issues, connected with project participants and consulted with them on any questions that emerged. We also began developing new projects lasting 2, 7, and 10 days. A preliminary cost estimate was made for each project.
  • In January, we laid groundwork for the program “The World of Nature, the World for All.” We continued to work on creating videos about children's eco-education. In the second half of July, we started developing a comprehensive plan for continuing environmental education next year. The task is to provide full-fledged lessons on environmental topics in the Baikal region on an ongoing basis.
  • Our specialists at the “Competence Center” are ready to develop and share experience. In January we continued training in courses on interpretation, social design and fundraising. We conducted 10 consultations on trail construction, recruiting volunteers, organizing projects and the special features of the Baikal region. We participated in a Zoom meeting on the results of the AVC internship in eco-education, where our interns shared their conclusions after the three-month internship.
  • We have developed internship programs for those who want to travel to Baikal and learn from our experience. We have also updated and expanded our leadership training course. Lastly, we are continuing correspondence with Russian protected areas that are interested in hosting us.
  • As part of our trail-building program “GBT,” we are consulting with specially protected nature areas, forestry enterprises and representatives from different regions. Among these is a project at the Sakhalin Botanical Garden-Institute at the Far Eastern Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences, and a project in the town of Baikalsk, in the Irkutsk region, to build a trail along the Solzan River to the “Devil’s Finger” rock outcrop. This interpretive nature trail will be accessible for local residents as well as visitors. As a result of our consultations, we will be able to tell which trail-building projects will be completed this year.

Additionally, as is the case at any organization, we have a lot of administrative work. This includes documenting our programs and filing paperwork as well as updating our website, improving our social media presence, and developing new tools for collecting donations.

All this work is possible thanks to the support of our friends, partners and volunteers.

Thank you for having faith in us!