After an 11 hour flight, a stopover in Johannesburg, and a connecting flight to Windhoek, they both took the 45 minute transfer to the Namibia Wildlife Sanctuary where they were able to get involved in a whole host of activities. This included caracal walks, carnivore feeds (of lions, cheetahs and leopards), patrols of the enclosure fence, a visit of the ‘clever cubs’ daycare and even a walk with the resident baby baboons! Here are a few words from Hannah with regards to the project:
The work being done here is vital in the conservation of this magnificent species, and so far has proven greatly successful. To date, over 80 cheetahs, 30 leopards, and 15 brown hyena (the rarest type of hyena) have been released around various sites in Namibia.
Following their trip to Namibia, Michael and Hannah flew to our Victoria Falls Conservation Project in Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe. As one of our newest projects, they were excited to see what would be in store for them! After a bit of a queue at the airport to get their Zimbabwean visa, they were met by Brenda – one of the lovely project facilitators. During their time at the project site, they were able to get involved in a wide array of activities – particularly with regard to habitat preservation.
These included elephant and rhino identification, tree protection from (mischievous!) elephants, road and fence maintenance, a visit to the local school on site, and alien plant removal. Here are a few words from Michael with regards to his time at the project:
“It was great to get out of the office and have a thorough look at our projects in Namibia, Zimbabwe and South Africa. A particular highlight for me was seeing critically endangered black rhinos at our Victoria Falls Conservation Project in Zimbabwe. It was such a privilege to see them in the wild, and seeing the work that Brenda, Peter and their team was doing really emphasised just how important these projects are for wildlife conservation and habitat preservation”.
For the last leg of their Southern African tour, Michael and Hannah headed to the ‘Askari Wilderness Conservation Project’, located near the town of Hoedspruit. Askari lies in 25,000 hectares of untamed beauty which used to be owned by local cattle farm owners. Here volunteers are heavily involved in trying to return the land back to nature, and like with the project in Victoria Falls, much of the work is reserve, habitat and research based. Acting almost as pseudo-staff, volunteers really count to the project, and facilitators Katie and Joe really help them to feel an essential part of the team! What’s more, Askari offers the chance to tick off all of the ‘Big 5’ – surely on everyone’s tick-list!
For more information on these incredible projects, please see our ‘Volunteering in Africa’ page.