When purchasing items such as artwork, meals and souvenirs, we recommend that visitors buy locally produced goods and support local artisans. In this way, visitors are able to help sustain the local community, contribute towards conservation and enrich their own lives. During your stay there will be opportunities to purchase goods from local artists, market stalls and restaurants in keeping with the ideals of fair trade. Our guides will advise on a ‘fair price’ if requested, however it is worth noting that a relatively small sum can make a huge difference to peoples lives in Africa and guests are asked to consider this when bargaining with market stallholders. Do not buy products that exploit wildlife, aid in habitat destruction, or come from endangered species. Our staff are encouraged to develop their own skills in producing goods such as art work for sale. 100% of the proceeds from these sales go to the originator.
Conservation – Our management and safari staff have many years experience in wildlife conservation and are actively involved with ongoing conservation projects. Will Fox (the founder of On Track Safaris) is a dedicated conservationist and the chairman of PAW (Protecting African Wildlife) Conservation Trust. Will has worked extensively in leopard research and is the manager of INGWE - Leopard Research (based at the Thaba Tholo Reserve). During any stay at the Black Leopard Camp, guests are offered the opportunity to become further involved in conservation projects (for example INGWE - Leopard Research) if they wish, by accompanying our staff. Game drive vehicles do not deviate from existing roads and tracks, however guided foot safaris will access game trails which cannot be reached by vehicle. When on foot, stay on the trail as deviating can cause erosion and other environmentally harmful impacts.
Respect cultural differences. Local customs and traditions may be different from your own. Take the time to learn what behaviour is acceptable and what is not. Always ask permission to take photos of people and respect their wishes if they refuse. If you do take a photo, offer to send copies back to them and make sure to follow through with your promise. Our safari staff are encouraged to develop within the company. Staff receive a reward package made up of a fair base salary, accommodation, their individual performance and that of the company. Personal development lies at the corner stone of the OTS staff policy. Individuals are encouraged to develop within the organisation to achieve their goals and where applicable to produce conservation based items for sale (100% of the proceeds going to the originator). All of our food, bathroom and kitchen supplies are from local sources and as far as possible, we aim to use a combination of organic, fair-trade and sustainable products. In the case where a local supplier has no formal policy in place, we conduct our own assessments, which help to highlight those areas of supply which fall outside of our desired criteria and require improvement.