Wilderness Safaris has won the 2021 Virtuoso Luminaries, Legends and Leaders Award in the Environmental category, for its outstanding Conservation Heroes COVID-relief programme.
Since April 2020, Wilderness Safaris’ teams have delivered over 15 000 food parcels, positively impacting some 75 000 people from over 35 communities, with more on the go.
The Conservation Heroes COVID-relief programme seeks to address to urgent needs as follows:
- Protect wildlife and wilderness areas from increased poaching threats. This is especially important for criminal poaching syndicates looking to capitalise on reduced law enforcement and tourism presence.
- Meet the basic food needs – being our staff as well as their wider communities of people who have lost their tourism-related livelihoods. Addressing this need also reduces the likelihood of ordinary people resorting to poaching wildlife for food.
Dr Neil Midlane, Wilderness Safaris Group Impact Manager, said:
“Thank you to Virtuoso Annual Members for voting for us and for your continued belief in our conservation tourism vision. Without you, we could not do what we do. At the start of the pandemic, we realised very quickly that many of the people in the communities that we support would be marginalised to the loss of tourism revenue and income. They would be struggling to put food onto the table. As a result, we started our Conservation Heroes programme, with the objective to support these people through the pandemic and help them ensure that they didn’t have to resort to poaching wildlife in order to feed their families. Today, we’ve distributed more than 15,000 food parcels positively impacting over 75,000 people in 35 different communities across Africa. This programme continues today, and will continue to run until tourism returns to help these people get back on their feet.”
Read more about the Conservation Heroes COVID-relief programme here: https://wilderness-safaris.com/conservation-heroes