As we come to the end of another year, we begin to reflect on the past and simultaneously project into the future. We are equally amazed that 2021 is over, and yet feel as if we are just processing 2020, its rippling effect a 12 month long affair at least. The last 24 months have been spent absorbing lessons upon lessons, dished out by the universe en mass, nature in its resilience; our teacher.
Adaptation, acceptance, loss, empathy, compassion, reflection and gratitude. A whirlwind of emotions through a worldwide pandemic. Every individual, community and industry has been affected, has learnt, lost and connected through adversity. Memes are starting to surface for next year, 2020 Too.
However, we are now more prepared than ever to face uncertainty head on. We have taken a leaf out of nature’s book and applied the concept of stress growth, finding ways to return stronger, with new purpose and fresh perspective. 2020 Too good to be true here we come! Being in the tourism industry, we often get asked how and why we persevere. We even quietly question ourselves at times, especially when restrictions are reinstated and the light which was beginning to shine seemed to be instantly turned off. However, the reason why we do what we do is easy to explain, the how seemingly figures itself out as we go.
When one joins the travel industry, one enters into a lifelong love affair with Africa; it’s landscapes, its people and its wild spaces. We pour passion and collected knowledge into turning dreams into realities, creating and sharing African adventures which impact both the traveler and those on the ground. The Jenman African Safaris team is not in the business of simply selling holidays, but in sharing their deep respect and understanding of this colourful and character filled continent. It is here we find our why, in the quilted tapestry of Africa.
In the absence of travel, we have realised the absolute necessity of its presence. It has fuelled our purpose within tourism, highlighting the need to protect and preserve our wild spaces and the communities which rely on their existence. As much as national parks need to reduce human impact , a certain level of human involvement is essential for its survival. Facilitation comes in the form of creating fire breaks for the dry season, maintaining water holes, training anti-poaching units and conducting research to better understand our wild spaces. Committed conservationists alongside wildlife warriors dedicate their lives to protecting all species within the wilderness, ensuring a healthy and sustainable ecosystem for the future.
Without tourism, funding for many of these projects runs dry. Human participation significantly decreases, resulting in a significant increase in poaching as well as misuse of land and resources. This puts wildlife as well as communities in jeopardy, the approach not one of long-term benefit. Communities that border national parks equally rely on tourism for employment, as well as support in the infrastructure of schools and clinics. Most lodges pledge allegiance to a nearby village, creating partnerships with local residents which benefits all.
These conservation initiatives and communities are the foundation of why we persevere. They are the threads which weave the continent together, giving the landscapes soul and keeping our souls fulfilled. They are the heart beat of the land. Africa runs through our veins, calling us to share her beauty as an industry and beyond. We extend our gratitude to all members, suppliers, operators and guests who share the love and respect for this multi-cultural and colourful continent. Taking the lessons we have learnt, looking back to look forward, we honour our commitment to our wildlife and communities, into 2022 and beyond.