National Geographic

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Protecting and restoring big cats and their habitats via field-based, action-oriented, and quantifiable strategic programs.

Picture of 2014 National Geographic Explorer Shivani Bhalla promoting the coexistence between lions and humans

National Geographic Explorer Shivani Bhalla, a fourth-generation Kenyan, uses scientific research and community outreach to promote coexistence between people and lions who share habitats.

Photograph by Kat Keane Hogue

The goal of the Big Cats Initiative is to the halt the decline of lions, cheetahs, and other big cats worldwide. Therefore, National Geographic will be collecting all available data on big cat populations, demographics, and habitat and will then fund a variety of conservation projects across their range. You can be part of this important work by applying for a grant to help big cats.

Proposals including any of the following criteria are encouraged:

  • Run anti-poaching programs;
  • Perform interventions to reduce big cat mortalities;
  • Build and maintain livestock enclosures that protect livestock from predation and cats from retaliatory killings;
  • Provide educational opportunities that increase knowledge of the threats to big cats and promote participation in big cat conservation efforts;
  • Test new technology;
  • Establish economic incentives for local people to ensure long-term survival of big cats;
  • For cheetahs, seek to fulfill the recommendations from formal regional strategies and national action plans.

Currently funded programs are helping stem the decline of big cats through increased livestock protection, building partnerships with local communities, anti-poaching campaigns and patrols, conservation education, capacity building, and outreach campaigns. See some of the successful projects the Big Cats Initiative funded.

Before applying for a grant learn more about Preparing your Proposal and Eligibility requirements. See Grant Opportunities for information about exact deadlines. 


Learn How to Apply

Have questions about the Big Cats Initiative? Contact us at