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Making an impact

In the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development, Carrie Hampton has a look at how to give back when you travel to this southern African country, and how to ensure that your funds are going into the right hands
Coming full circle. Engaged, employed, uplifted and committed local communities are at the heart of Great Plains Conservation’s philosophy

I want my holiday spend to matter,” stated Celsea Jenkins from California on safari at Great Plains Conservation’s Selinda Camp in the Okavango Delta. Her resolve was fuelled by unethical wildlife encounters she and husband Wyatt had experienced in Asia. From then on, they decided their annual adventure would be selected more consciously. Fulfilling their objectives is surprisingly easy in Botswana, a country that has cultivated relationships with safari operators that use tourism as a means for greater good, such as conservation, local employment and social upliftment.

Spreading the word

African lodges are increasingly ensuring their operations support wildlife conservation and communities; and Great Plains is just one of a number of progressive companies steered by seasoned safari personalities and conservationists. When film-makers Dereck and Beverly Joubert cofounded the organisation, their mission was to find a perfect formula for conservation, community engagement and commerce that would have a lasting impact on iconic African animals and wilderness areas. Their documentaries have enabled them to change the world as few people can, making their dreams a reality.

Tugging at the collective conscience, their books, television appearances and eight Emmy Award-winning films tell of nature’s impending doom from loss of habitat and poaching. They seize the attention of conscientious travellers worldwide and reach millions, helping to spread the crucial message that African wildlife is in crisis.

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About Travel Africa

Life as a chimp - everything you need to know about this great ape • Kafue National Park's natural attraction • Driving around Zimbabwe • The Waterberg and Madikwe, South Africa • Tarangire on foot • Stunning leopard portfolio • Learning to guide in the Mara • Taking tea in Malawi • The Himba today... and much more!
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