Botswana highlights and Victoria falls

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Responsible tourism

Responsible tourism: Botswana highlights and Victoria falls

Environment

The scenery and landscapes that you will see on this tour can only be described as remarkable, and we place a huge emphasis on ensuring that these wonderful lands are preserved and treated with the utmost respect. Your pre-departure information will include advice on how to enjoy your Botswana adventure in an environmentally responsible way, including responsible use of water, a most precious commodity throughout the areas we will visit, and appropriate waste disposal. We also ensure that all of the lodges and accommodations we use on this trip have appropriate “green” credentials and have policies in place for environmentally friendly operations.

For example the owners of the Oddballs Enclave Camp where you will be staying for part of this trip have put every effort into considering the surroundings of the camp. There are no motorised activities available so as to reduce emissions and solar panels are used throughout the whole camp to power the batteries and heat the water. On top of this there are no generators used on site and every single piece of waste is collected and flown out of the Okavango altogether to be disposed of in a responsible manner.

Likewise, the operators of the mobile safari element of your trip are exceptionally knowledgeable about the environments in which you will be staying and they make every effort to ensure that your stay will have as little impact as possible on the surroundings. They also have their own environmental education project which reaches out to nearby schools to raise awareness amongst the kids about nature, wildlife, environmental issues and conservation.

On this remarkable trip one of the main focuses will of course be on the incredible wildlife encounters that Botswana is renowned for, and we are 100% committed to ensuring that your trip to these engaging lands has a completely positive effect. From big cats and predators to massive herds of elephants, you will be witnessing these fascinating creatures in their natural habitats and we place a huge importance on ensuring that these animals and their homes are protected. Tourism to Botswana has the power to directly benefit 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.

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. Further to this the ground handlers that we use for this trip are 100% committed to ensuring the ongoing protection of wildlife by supporting charities such as the Maun Animal Welfare Society which provides free veterinary treatment to low income individuals in Northern Botswana. In turn this vital service assists in preventing the spread of disease from domestic animals to the world famous Botswana wildlife population.

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.

Community

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. 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.

The providers that we use for this tour are passionate about protecting the communities, wildlife and landscapes of this remarkable country. Committed to creating and upholding transparent and honest relationships with local communities and suppliers, they work tirelessly to ensure continued revenue streams for local communities and only hire local people. With established in-house training programs, mentoring systems and ongoing training our agents provide career opportunities that without the tourism aspect would not be possible. We use a local ground handler 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.

Our ground handler partners are continually investing in social responsibility initiatives and support numerous local initiatives including community buses, ongoing investment in local schools and working with the Travel for Impact organisation. On top of this they also have fantastic initiatives in place for promoting the importance of keeping women in the workplace and provide funds to numerous charities including Women Against Rape (WAR) and Bana Ba Letsatsi which operates a rehabilitation centre that offers a place of safety for the terrifying number of orphaned and vulnerable children in Maun.

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. The operators of the mobile safari element of your trip are involved in a fantastic scheme called Pack for a Purpose and you will be encouraged to participate in this as you prepare for your journey. The Pack for a Purpose scheme is an initiative that allows travellers like you to make a lasting impact in the communities you will be visiting. You will be encouraged to save just a few kilos of space in your suitcase which can be used for bringing supplies for local schools and medical clinics in the area which rely on the impact of tourism to continue to thrive. By becoming involved in this scheme you can make a priceless impact on the lives of local children and families.

We are committed to ensuring that on all of our tours we only use lodges and hotels that have a proven track record of treating staff well and fairly. This is evident in all of the accommodations we use, where staff are evidently happy, well cared for, and are given the tools needed to create lifelong careers that are fulfilling and worthwhile. Before departure you will also be provided with information on 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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