Swaziland National Museum - travel journal

Tour group
We have worked with our partner in Swaziland, All Out Africa, to devise a trip for children that attend the local Neighbourhood Care Point (NCP) centres. These centres were started by local communities and most of the children who attend have lost a parent, or in some cases are orphaned. Traveling by minibus and stopping for lunch ensures a fun-packed day out for the children plus they see some of the local heritage sites that, too often, only tourists to their country have the privilege of viewing.

The Museum has an essential role in preserving past traditions and culture for future generations. In 1974 the International Council of Museums (ICOM) defined the museum as a "non-profit making institution in the service of society and of its development and open to the public" (ICOM 1974). The objectives of the Museum are:

(a) To collect all natural and man-made objects that reflect both natural and cultural heritage of the Swazi and Southern African peoples;
(b) To document all specimens and objects collected;
(c) To conserve and preserve using the best means possible all items in the collection;
(d) To exhibit for public information, materials in its collection;
(e) To serve as an informal education forum for school groups, refugee camps and adult education centres.

The Museum was built in 1972. Two small rooms house the exhibition area. In 1986 a storage room, workshop, photography dark room and a temporary exhibition area was constructed. This area completes the ethnography section. In 1990, Government approved and funded the construction of the showroom and natural history wing. The showroom houses three royal cars used by King Sobhuza II.

Date: 28th and 29th June 2017

Explorers: 50 children (25 on each trip) from Ezulwini Neighourhood Care Point (NCP) aged between four and six years old, plus 8 adults (including 1 NCP teacher, 1 cooking lady, 1 volunteer and 1 All Out Africa supporting staff for each trip).

The weather was: Bright and sunny.

Children on the busLooking at stuffed animals
We saw: Stuffed animals at the National Museum, namely zebra, lion, baboon, birds, lizards, crocodile and a Swazi hut. At the Late King Sobhuza 11 memorial centre we saw the late King Sobhuza’s cars and historic pictures. We also saw where the late King's body was laid for his nation to view, before taken to the traditional mountain for his final resting place. We were also shown the light that it lit each time the late King is remembered on special occasions, especially on his birthday which is on the 22nd July.

We ate: Chicken stew with salad and variety of fruit juices.

Some of our favourite parts of the day:
  • Seeing the historic cars of the late King Sobhuza 11 and pictures.
  • Seeing a lot of stuffed animals.

Children with statue
Classic cars
Quotes from the day
"I was happy with the trip. I saw a stuffed zebra, snake and baboon. I also saw the statue of the late King Sobhuza 11. I was also excited when I saw the cars of the late King."
- Siphesihle Dalmini (age 6)

"I was amazed with all the stuffed animals that I saw, namely a crocodile, snake, lizard and zebra. I was also happy to get the opportunity to view the pictures of the Late King Sobhuza 11 at the memorial Centre.
- Cebolenkosi Gamedze (age 6)
All Out Africa logoAbout our partner organisation: All Out Africa is a social enterprise comprising of a group of companies and a non-profit based in South Africa, Swaziland, Mozambique and Botswana. It caters to people looking for a wide variety of African experiences from volunteering, tours, research, internships, and university field studies, whilst at the same time, building sustainable long-term projects.

All Out is serious about giving back to the community and the environment. That is why they set up a foundation to help expand and sustain their project development, which include support to the six care centres for vulnerable children, a sports development program for local children and youth, community building projects, child sponsorship program to support vulnerable children at primary and high school levels to assist them with school requirements, and facilitate conservation research projects at the wildlife and marine research centres. All Out shares their passion for Southern Africa’s people, places and wildlife with the world and offers adventures that change lives.

Children queuing
Heading to museum
Eating lunch
Children walking
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