Latest News9 February 2016
Proud tracker graduates dream of making an even bigger difference
Since inception, SA College for Tourism Tracker Academy has graduated 74 trackers, 67 of whom are permanently employed in southern Africa's conservation industry. This is a deployment success rate of 91%. Training is ongoing in both training campuses at Samara and Londolozi game reserves. Graduates accumulate some 1000 hours of practical tracking experience during the year’s course. The trainers at the Tracker Academy pride themselves on preparing students to track and find animals in varying types of terrain, a rare skill known as "Animal Trailing" - expertise desperately lacking in many wildlife protection organisations in Africa. → read more…
Winner of the BHP Billiton Achiever Award and the Mail & Guardian Investing in the Future Education Award in 2012
Although Africa currently accounts for only 4% of the global tourism market, the continent’s wealth of natural diversity offers a unique opportunity to expand this market through nature-based tourism. In order to capitalise on the rapid growth of tourism worldwide, ecotourism destinations in Africa – and southern Africa specifically – need professional staff and the necessary infrastructure to cater for those who come to experience Africa’s natural wonders.
The SA College for Tourism has recognised these opportunities and provides professional training for hospitality staff and trackers.
The SA College for Tourism was established in 2001 by Dr Anton Rupert, renowned financier and philanthropist and at the time chairman of Peace Parks Foundation, in partnership with international agencies and public donors. The college operates under the auspices of Peace Parks Foundation and, like the foundation, supports the principles of responsible tourism while minimising exploitation. It is the first training centre in southern Africa to focus its training programmes on the development of operational and management skills for the lodge and guesthouse industry. In addition, it offers courses in the age-old skill of wildlife tracking to preserve this precious indigenous knowledge. Every year 90 young women and 16 young men – all unemployed and from impoverished rural backgrounds – are sponsored for a year-long training course in hospitality service skills and tracking skills respectively.
One of the outcomes of the establishment of transfrontier conservation areas (TFCAs) or peace parks in southern Africa is creating an economically sustainable livelihood for the people living in or adjacent to these parks. It is the aim of the SA College for Tourism to return its graduates to their villages and towns to work in the lodges and guesthouses and for the game reserves that form part of the tourism infrastructure of these peace parks. Upon graduation, these young people are also equipped to establish themselves as entrepreneurs in small tourism businesses.
In 2012 the college won the following two awards:
- BHP Billiton Achiever Award – Best Training Programme: Tourism
- Mail & Guardian Investing in the Future Education Award
The SA College for Tourism is a non-profit organisation.
- Public benefit organisation number: 18/11/13/349
- Fundraising number: 080-778-NPO
If you would like to make a donation to the SA College for Tourism please contact Claire Binneman on +27 (0)21 880 5110.
Donors supporting the SA College for Tourism
The SA College for Tourism would like to thank the following donors currently supporting its work, as well as past donors listed in previous years' Annual Reviews.
- Absa Bank
- Anglo American Chairman’s Fund
- DHK Architects
- Embassy of Finland
- Dutch Postcode Lottery
- Empowers Africa (including Brian and Lisa McCarthy)
- European Union
- Stephen Falcke
- The Foschini Group
- Jagersfontein Developments
- Lloyds Travel
- Londolozi Game Reserve
- Marsh Africa
- Werner Myburgh
- Nhlayisa Nutritional Solutions
- Barbara Pudel
- Old Mutual Foundation
- Frank and Ida Raimondo
- Reinet Foundation
- Dr Harold Riley
- Safari & Outdoors
- Sal and Eugen Roux
- Koos and Rona Rupert Education Trust
- Rupert Nature Foundation
- Hansjürg and Francesca Saager
- Sabi Sand Pfunanai Trust
- Samara Private Game Reserve
- Irene Staehelin
- Swedish Postcode Lottery
- Lisa Thompson-Smeddle
- The Thornybush Collection
- Tsogo Sun
- The Van Zyl Family