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Awards and Recognition

CNN IBN Real Heroes Award
Ishita Khanna, Founder Ecosphere was given the real heroes award for her initiatives in the Spiti and Lahaul valley of Himachal to enable local communities adapt to the impacts of climate change.
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CNN-IBN Indian of the Year 2009 in the category of Public Service
Ecosphere was nominated for the biggest and most credible awards of the nation, which honour and recognise Indians whose endeavours stand beyond the ordinary.



Virgin Holidays Responsible Tourism Awards 2010 for Best in a mountain environment
"Ecosphere is a self-reliant social enterprise where the economic benefits to mountain communities are both clearly demonstrated and transformative. Ecosphere has moved from being donor funded to self-supporting, and 55 out of the 66 villages in the Spiti Valley have seen their incomes rise by up to 50% through Ecosphere’s diverse initiatives and responsible tourism programme. Their carbon reduction programme is also comprehensive, citing a reduction of 520 tons of C\O2 per year." > Read more

The Sierra Club ‘Green Energy and Green Livelihoods Achievement Award’ - 2009
In recognition for the efforts of Ecosphere in developing sustainable livelihoods for the local community and linking it to nature and culture conservation. The award recognizes community initiatives to promote green economic development, adaptation of renewable energy alternatives and organizational leadership in a grassroots environmental campaign.

Established way back in 1892 by John Muir – a Scottish-born inventor, writer and conservationist - the Sierra Club is the oldest and largest grassroots environmental organisation in the US with chapters in all 50 states of the country, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and also in Canada since 1963.

Sierra Club Executive Director Carl Pope said, “We set out on this path more than a century ago by promoting conservation awareness through mountain outings in the United States. We are delighted to recognize Ecosphere Spiti because it so clearly shares our own ideals for protecting a nation’s cultural and natural heritage for future generations.” > Read more

The Ashden Awards for Sustainable Energy – Global Energy Award Winners 2009
Ecosphere was proud to be a collaborator in the consortium of NGOs from Spiti and Ladakh, spearheaded by Geres that won the coveted Ashden award. The award was received in a special ceremony held in London and was presented by Prince Charles. > Read more

Wild Asia Responsible Tourism Award – 2008
Ecosphere was the recipient of this award in the community initiative category. This was in recognition of their work on the promotion and development of responsible eco-travel in Spiti valley. > Read more

Among 50 Social Entrepreneurs in India – 2009
Ishita Khanna, Founder Ecosphere featured as one of the 50 social entrepreneurs in India by Outlook Business (Sept 2009) that is making a positive difference to lives of people and the environment.
As stated in the article -The New Wealth Creators - They put society above self. They use entrepreneurial means to drive social change. These 50 social entrepreneurs are enriching the nation. > Read more

Green Circuit
Ecosphere is a member of The Green Circuit, a special initiative uniting the best eco-trips in the Indian sub-continent in one ‘green’er circuit . United by responsible tourism and joined together by ground travel to reduce carbon emissions, you can access magnificent overland eco-adventures. > For more details

Fiona Jeffery, Chairman, World Travel Mart has this to say about the Green Circuit
"At a time when tour operators compete with each other for every segment of travel business, it's a pleasure to see 5 responsible tourism operators from the Indian sub-continent come together to provide responsible holidays. I am glad to know that the GREEN Circuit operators from Nepal, Western and Eastern Himalayas, Orissa and South India are using tourism as a tool to uplift the quality of their natural and cultural heritage by working with local communities at a grass roots level. The Green Circuit is an initiative that should be replicated in other parts of the world to strengthen the Responsible Tourism movement“.

Himalayan Homestays
(www.himalayan-homestays.com/spiti)
Ecosphere is a member of the Himalayan Homestays network that promote community based travel in the Himalayas. In 2005, Himalayan Homestays won the Travel & Leisure Global Vision Award for Community Outreach for their work in Ladakh. This was in recognition for defending the historical, cultural and ecological integrity of the traveler’s world.

The Himalayan Homestays was also highly commended by the Virgin Holidays First Choice Responsible Travel Awards in 2005.