One stop service: facilitating conservation of medicinal plants and traditional health services to ethnic communities of Chittagong Hill Tracts. Phase II

One Stop Service - herbal healing

The goal of the project is to contribute to the conservation of medicinal plants and associated traditional knowledge through promotion of indigenous herbal healing practices among ethnic communities living in Bolipara Union of Bandarban District of the Chittagong Hill Tracts region.

Community members  planting medicinal plant _Chittagong Hill Tracts, Bangladesh Photo: IUCN Bangladesh

IUCN Bangladesh Country Office, in collaboration with Bolipara Nari Kalyan Somity (BNKS), a member organization of IUCN, has been implementing the ‘One Stop Service Project’ with financial support from Keidanren Nature Conservation Fund (KNCF).

Based on the success of the first phase of the project, started in 2008, an additional 12 months was granted to strengthen and extend the initiatives developed during the first phase.


The project is running in the Bolipara Union of Thanchi Upazila under the Bandarban Hill District of Bangladesh and lies in the southern-eastern hilly part of the country.


Local boiddo (traditional herbal healer), bhante (Buddhist monks), local leaders, and the communities of the Bolipara Union under Thanchi Upazila of Bandarban Hill District are the primary stakeholders. Secondary stakeholders include local administration and government service providers at upazila and union levels.

Major Outputs

The major outputs are grouped under the following five categories:

  •  Knowledge: Expanded the documentation of traditional knowledge on medicinal plants and herbal healing, promoted and shared information with the relevant stakeholders
  • Governance: Local religious and community leaders engaged as the custodians of the documented traditional knowledge
  • Conservation: The establishment and self-sufficiency of multiple community-based conservation areas for rare and important medicinal plants
  •  Health service: ‘Healer to Healer’ (or ‘Boiddo to Boiddo’) information sharing approach promoted for the preservation of traditional knowledge through regular delivery of natural healthcare services
  • Marketing: Established community recognition of the link between conservation and marketing of medicinal plants

Planned Activities

  • Update the electronic database of rare and important medicinal plants and the associated traditional knowledge (established in the first phase)
  • Use workshops to present the initiative at local (Bolipara / Thanchi) and regional (Bandarban) levels as a successful pilot study for replication within the region
  • Present the initiative at the national level as a model case study of implementing elements of the Access and Benefit Sharing (ABS) regime
  •  Initiate training for project staff on project management and nursery and plantation development
  • Use stakeholder surveys to understand the change in the attitude of the community towards herbal healing in response to this initiative
  • Liaise with the local Buddhist monks (bhante) and community leaders (Headman – Head of a mouza; several para) and karbari (Head of a para or village) on the practical management of the documented traditional knowledge
  • Raise the profile of the project at the local administration and government service provider level
  • Expand and strengthen the medicinal plant nursery and demonstration plots established at the Healthcare Complex in the first phase
  • Maintain the medicinal plant gardens established in five temples during the first phase
  • Facilitate and encourage new medicinal plant conservation areas
  • Organize awareness raising programmes for children and distribute seedlings
  • Support the Health Complex to continue to act as an interface between herbal healer and patients from the community
  • Transform the Health Complex as the platform of ‘knowledge sharing’ between boiddo-boiddo, boiddo-community and boiddo-traders
  • Establish a supply chain of medicinal plant seedlings raised across the five existing community nurseries and maintain the conservation sites within the project area
  • Explore the marketing opportunities of medicinal plant seedlings and herbal products in the region through consultation with appropriate agencies
  • Convene a fair to increase awareness among the local community about the importance of medicinal plants. In addition, this event will bring together and connect the different project stakeholders; boiddo, community, traders and local administration
  • Facilitate a visit to the project site for boiddo located outside the area to increase their awareness, share their experiences, and provide information about the project strategy.


May 2009 - April 2010

Project Status:



For more information, please contact:

Mohammad Abdul Motaleb

Research Associate

Work area: 
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