Botswana & Victoria Falls, green season safari

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This trip can be tailor made throughout the year to suit your requirements
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Responsible tourism

Responsible tourism: Botswana & Victoria Falls, green season safari

Environment

The supplier partners on this fantastic tour which takes to you 2 of Bostwana’s finest wildlife destinations are exceptionally dedicated to ensuring that their tours provide a lasting and beneficial effect on the people, environment and wildlife of Botswana. Along with our partners we believe that “good” tourism to these parts of the world directly has a very positive impact on the conservation efforts that are in place across the country. By opening up the eyes of people across the world to the ongoing fight to conserve the habitats of the country’s wildlife and by actively encouraging investment in these schemes we can help the people of Botswana to preserve the elements that make this country so unique. On your tour you will expect to encounter many big cats, predators and massive herds of elephants roaming free in their natural habitats, and we place a huge importance on ensuring that these fascinating and beautiful creatures and their homes are protected.

As a company we support many wildlife organisations worldwide and we actively encourage our customers to offset any carbon footprint by contributing or donating to the conservation efforts in Botswana including the Save the Rhino and Big Cat initiatives that are in place. The pre-departure briefing on this tour will also include information on respecting the wildlife which you will encounter, including keeping a safe distance and ensuring not to encroach upon their habitats or do anything which may put the animal under any stress or danger. In most game reserves tourists are not permitted to leave their game vehicles, this is for the safety of both the tourists and the wildlife, and our local partners will ensure that the strict measures in place to conserve the habitats of this wildlife are stringently enforced.

Along with protecting the wildlife you will encounter we place great emphasis on ensuring that your trip is operated in as environmentally friendly way as possible. The lodges used on this tour have exceptional “green” credentials and are operated by a company dedicated to reducing the carbon footprint of their tourism practices. Every aspect of their operation is monitored in terms of its environmental impact, and they work tirelessly to maintain high standards of environmental care. Excellent recycling initiatives are in place including the controlled burning of all combustible litter and the removal of all glass, plastic and cans to Maun for recycling. There are also fantastic processes in place for treating waste water, which provides potable water for irrigating the lawns and gardens, whilst the water supply – for showering, washing and cooking – is drawn directly from the Okavango Delta and passed through a filter ready to use. Bottled drinking water used to be brought in by truck from Maun, but to reduce the environmental footprint the lodges now purify their borehole water with a recently installed state-of-the-art Reverse Osmosis system.

Your pre-departure information will advice on how further to travel in an environmentally responsible way, including responsible use of water, a most precious commodity throughout the areas we will visit, and appropriate waste disposal. The guides at your lodges will also help you to make sure any litter is taken back to camp and disposed of properly.

As a company we firmly believe that environmental responsibility starts at home (and the work place of course). We encourage recycling of waste as a company and as individuals. Where possible for business use we use public transport. We are also heavily involved with a project to recycle used or damaged binoculars, which are then sent to conservation projects across the world.

Community

As a company we believe in promoting tourism as a sustainable natural resource with the power to conserve, protect and improve lives, and this is particularly relevant on our Botswana itineraries. Tourism in Botswana is an exceptionally important revenue stream and we take every step necessary to ensure that the tours we provide create a 100% positive impact on the communities of the regions we visit.

The providers that we use for this tour are committed to creating and upholding transparent and honest relationships with local communities and suppliers. We are using a small, local management company, so that not only do they hold intimate knowledge of the regions and how to protect them, but also so that as much of the revenue created as possible is filtered straight through to the local communities.

The suppliers that we work with work tirelessly to ensure continued revenue streams for local communities. Our agents provide career opportunities that without the tourism aspect would not be possible, and through established in-house training programs, mentoring systems and ongoing training the local people of the communities we visit are encouraged to prosper. Their social responsibility programme focuses on their staff who, in the main, come from relatively poor rural backgrounds. They are conscious of the need to develop the human potential of the country’s citizens and a particular effort has been made to enhance skills within the company through an active and very successful skills development programme. Today a large proportion of their management staff are citizens of Botswana. With more than 400 citizen staff the company has over time made its mark on the Botswanan tourism industry as a trusted and quality-driven lodge operator. Chobe Game Lodge alone employs more than 100 citizen staff.

In response to the HIV/AIDS pandemic our partners have developed a far-reaching and integrated policy in partnership with various government agencies. This policy focuses on prevention, treatment and support as well as stigma reduction and community outreach. All staff who require ARV drugs are enrolled in the government’s comprehensive treatment programme. Privileged to have many properties within Botswana’s National Parks and Game Reserves, our partners are committed to working with the Department of Wildlife and National Parks to ensure the preservation of the unique habitats which abound. Our operator’s parent company is the only tourism company listed on the Botswana Stock Exchange and provides a mechanism for the citizens of Botswana to own a stake in and play a real and meaningful role in the development of the country’s tourism resource.

Their Wellness Program was initiated in 2002. The program began as an HIV/Aids Policy to assist those affected by this devastating disease. In 2004 the company was invited to partner with the International Labour Organisation, which is part of you United Nations, along with 13 other enterprises from a variety of industries in a pilot programme to address HIV workplace interventions. At the end of this programme the ILO recognised them as one of the best performing companies in the country in this vital area.

Solely using local agencies and providers means we have up to date local information and can therefore provide the most relevant information in our pre-departure literature. This includes information on on-going initiatives and community efforts that we actively encourage our customers to become involved in, including schemes to provide school children with equipment, cultural etiquette and advice on how to engage with and help the local communities. We offer first-hand advice on creating meaningful and respectful relationships between tourists and residents and suggest local areas and communities to visit gaining cultural insights along the way, along with advice on where to buy souvenirs (to ensure the proceeds are going directly to the vendors), where to eat & where to drink.

As a company we are proud of our principle based values which our community can always depend on. We support several home and overseas charities, organisations and campaigns including AfriCat, Worldwide Fund for Nature (WWF), the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust (WWT), Save the Albatross, South Georgia Habitat Restoration Project, Wader Trust, Wildlife SOS India and sponsorship of individual and underprivileged children in many countries. We are committed to ethically working with overseas partners who employ and support local communities and local guides who know and love their region like no other, delighted to share knowledge and are dedicated to looking after our valued passengers.

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