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28 Oct 2022
Merino South Africa recently hosted 120 Merino wool farmers from Argentine, Australia, New Zealand, Hungary, the UK and the USA. As part of their tour of South Africa, the visitors spent three days in Graaff-Reinet. Thanks to the intervention by Francois van der Merwe of the Koos & Rona Rupert Education Trust, one of the college’s major donors, the SA College for Tourism was included as one of the Graaff-Reinet highlights of the visit. Despite only starting their training in January this year, the students excelled.
On the Wednesday evening, following an organ recital in the Grootte Kerk, the college hosted a function for the tour group at Club Libertas, one of Graaff-Reinet’s historic homes. The following day the group visited Rubidge farm to view the Karoo fossils and then enjoyed a picnic luncheon under the trees. The luncheon had been prepared and was served by the students.
The day ended with the students preparing and serving them a four-course dinner, during which the group was informed about the college’s activities and with one of the students sharing her story of the college being “a beacon of hope to so many young women like her”.
As the president of Merino SA, Mr Julian Southey, said: “What a testimony. The young lass spoke for 10 minutes from her heart with no notes and had the audience spellbound and extremely moved. Food and service was superb.”
Peace Parks Foundation proudly supports the SA College for Tourism. The college was established in 2001 by the late Dr Anton Rupert, then chairman of Peace Parks Foundation. The foundation’s long-term support of the SA College for Tourism serves to develop staff for the many peace parks tourism initiatives.