Charities supported by Expert AfricaWe believe that 'responsible' travel companies should do a lot more than simply give donations to charities. To us, practicing responsible travel means being responsible in the way that we work – it's something that pervades what we do on a day to day basis. For a more in-depth look at what that means please visit our Responsible Travel page.
However, in addition to this, we also contribute to charities and NGOs that are relevant to the areas that we travel to and recently we have started to think about how we can be more strategic on this front. We aim to make our donations more structured and efficient and ultimately for them to have a wider and greater impact. This forms part of an extensive review of our sustainability strategy which we are currently undertaking. We’ll update this page at the beginning of 2016 with a progress update on all of that.
For now however we’ve simply listed a few of the charities and projects that we’ve worked with over the last few years below.
Recent and ongoing charity projectsWe’ve always tried to focus on small projects or local charities in need of extra funding, seldom are they high-profile causes with big PR budgets:
- We have recently begun providing a regular donation to Mkasanga School in Zambia, which is supported by the excellent Tafika Fund. With 800 children at the school it’s always a battle to make sure there is enough equipment for everyone, and so our contribution covers the cost of all their stationary. (Read more about the Tafika Fund…)
- Several times a year we contribute to the Save the Rhino Trust in Namibia - a non-governmental organisation which helps protect the population of desert-adapted black rhino in Damaraland. Trackers patrol the area on camels to help deter poachers and monitor population numbers. Our contributions help cover the cost of the camel's food, veterinary care and general upkeep costs, and remuneration of the trackers and camel keepers. (Read more about Save the Rhino Trust Namibia…)
- In mid-2009 we started to contribute money to the new Hanada Orphanage in Mfuwe, Zambia. This is the first orphanage in the area and supports over 300 children. However the growing numbers mean they are now relocating to a new site requiring the construction of new buildings. Our initial contribution helped finance the construction of the office, kitchen and admin buildings. (Read more about the Hanada Orphanage…)
- Tourism Concern) is an important pressure-group in the movement for more responsible tourism. We have been a member of the Ethical Tour Operators Group (ETOG) – an offshoot of Tourism Concern – since it was founded. We have helped it to finance several small projects, from an impact assessment of tourism on Zanzibar to a set of leaflets advising travellers about practical steps to make their travel more responsible.
- The Kawaza Village Project is a community project run by the villagers of Kawaza themselves. They offer tourists a rare opportunity to truly experience Kundu Culture and their village way of life by staying with them from one night up to seven. The profits are ploughed back into the village. For many years, Expert Africa has donated all of our commission on any bookings for time at Kawaza directly to their school fund. (Read more about Kawaza Village…)
- We were the official sponsors of “The Really Wild Picture Show 2008" (run by Friends of Conservation), which raised money for The Cheetah Conservation Fund. Based near Otjiwarongo, in Namibia, they research best practice for conservation and management of the world's cheetahs and this event helped them gain a greater awareness of their cause. (Read more about The Cheetah Conservation Fund…)
- In 2009 we started a programme of regular donations to Conservation Lower Zambezi – a non-governmental organisation which aims to reduce poaching and misuse of resources in Zambia's Lower Zambezi. We started by purchasing three new GPS devices to replace their existing supply which were old and worn as this equipment is integral to their work. In April 2011 we donated a further five devices. In 2012 we donated two digital SLR cameras; one for use in documenting the anti-poaching patrol's efforts and another for recording and promoting CLZ's environmental education work in remote schools and villages. A further donation went to buying an air to ground radio for use on anti-poaching patrols. (Read more about Conservation Lower Zambezi…)