30 December 2022

Chening Dorji- A Driver to a Published Birder

Chening Dorji is more than a person; he is one of the most inspiring stories you will hear. He was a primary school dropout who had to leave because of financial difficulty. He dropped out to help his parents and lived a life of a villager. After over a decade of cow herding, his desire for education brought him to Thimphu, where he became a driver for RSPN Bhutan.

A villager man coming to Thimphu and becoming a driver is no story to tell. But wait, as a driver, he just didn't drive around people, wash the car and wait for his salary. He did more. He drove around environmentalists, ecologists, conservationists, and all prominent wildlife experts. He didn't just drive them around and wait for them near the car; he joined them in the field.

Among many, while driving Aum Rebecca Pradhan, a renowned ecologist with RSPN, to the field, he showed his interest in learning from her about plants, animals and wildlife. She took notice of his genuine thirst for learning and started grooming him. He was her driver on the road and apprentice in the field, that too a great one.
On the other front, his former executive director at RSPN, Dr Lam Dorji too saw the passionate learner in Chening and sent him for a basic English language course in India. What difference can a basic language course make to an ordinary person? But Chening proved to be more than an ordinary learner, which Dr Lam Dorji recognized. In a few months, Chening returned with impressive literacy skills that opened his gate to unlimited knowledge.

The pleasant man, now equipped with literacy, didn't spare any opportunity to learn while driving wildlife experts around in the field and turned himself into a professional birder and photographer, who is now a resource person for young Bhutanese Birders(YBB). And now, he is a published author of a bird photography book, Wings of the Dragon, Birds from the Kingdom of Bhutan.
The second edition of his books is out. But it's not for sale, sadly. If you wish to grab a copy, contact WWF Bhutan, where he works. The book is published by his office in recognition of his extraordinary talent and story.

1 comment:

  1. Always inspired by your new blogs sir. Give us new stories more like this.


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