From Here 2 Timbuktu

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From Here 2 Timbuktu is a 6 month overland journey from London across the Sahara and through West Africa. Clients can join me for overland trips or set tours. I run Tuareg desert Safaris and festival tours in Mali in Jan, a river Cruise down the River Senegal in Feb and primate conservation/cultural trips and gorilla treks in Cameroon in April and May.

All of my tours take people right into the African community. Our hosts, operators, guides and suppliers are always taken from the community covered by the tour. All tours have a remote community as their destination and From Here 2 Timbuktu donates 10% of profits to 2 schools, one in Cameroon and one in Mali.
Member since: 29 Oct 2008

How the minimum criteria of the responsible travel standard was met...

Economic responsibility

  • All of my tours use operators local to the region of the country in which the tour is taking place. Wherever additional guides or drivers are necessary such as when we visit villages or tribes not connected to the tour operator, they are taken from the community the tour is in at the time.
  • We always stay in locally owned hotels or guest houses. In the cities I have chosen one off hotels which are run and owned by people of the city and that are integrated into their immediate community. When we are in the villages we either pay local taxes or make a donation to the school.
  • Fruit, vegetables and meat or fish will be purchased fresh, en route, and from local suppliers. Where we have to stock up on preserved foods and staples we will buy through local retailers in the nearest town.

Environmental responsibility

  • When possible and appropriate I encourage my clients to help fetch water once on a trip when in a village to underline the value of water in the community. From Here 2 Timbuktu provides back up emergency water on all tours but encourages clients to take responsibility for their own water in-take. We ask clients to buy bottled water as they go and to save the plastic bottles for the children to recycle.
  • Where possible From Here 2 Timbuktu tries to include a journey by public transport. This brings clients closer to African society and saves on fuel. It also introduces clients to a theme of my tours which is how the African way can at first seem unplanned and slow but often reveals itself to be the most logical, economic and resource-saving way.
  • From Here 2 Timbuktu does not rent an office and does most of its marketing over the internet. I have no brochures and the only paper marketing that I rely on are A5 flyers. When I am in the UK I tend to use public transport or my motorbike.

Social responsibility

  • From Here 2 Timbuktu believes that the most equitable way to support destination communities is through education. All of my tours and bespoke trips directly support schools through consultation with their governing bodies. Together we assess where money could most effectively be spent.
  • From Here 2 Timbuktu commits itself to channelling 10% of net profits into education projects in the remote kingdom of Esu in the Northwest province of Cameroon, and in the nomadic community around Aguelhoc in the Sahara in northern Mali, both destination communities of my tours.
  • I am looking at setting up scholarships for achieving children in these two regions to help them firstly get their fees paid and then to support them in further education. I guarantee that 100% of any donation will go towards getting money to where it is intended, the only charges being banking fees.

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