South African social upliftment
Did you know?
The upliftment of women is a priority in South African poverty relief projects.
Body Shop founder Anita Roddick once said: ‘The majority of us do not want our holidays to be at someone else's expense, particularly when we go to developing countries. As consumers we have the right to know the impact that our money and holidays have on people in the destinations.'
In South Africa, social upliftment projects have been developed that take the thought one step further, and to maximise the benefits that guests bring to our country.
Some are initiated by government, others by individuals or corporates. But behind them is a conscious goal: to find a win-win path that helps redress past inequalities, to support South African community tourism, to increase quality of life and in many cases, to offer visitors a deep and enriching tourism experience. For South Africa, it's a natural match, since many of the poorest communities are found in the most scenic surroundings.
The country's heritage is a natural tourism asset, and South African cultural projects are fascinating.
You'll find South African social upliftment projects in the form of tour guides, small township restaurants, community members acquiring equity and training through the generosity of larger operators, rural people trained in conservation issues, and the showcasing of lifestyles.
It's a whole shift in tourism and South Africa is pioneering a new way. The benefits on the ground are life-changing for all concerned.
One tour operator expressed it this way: ‘Because of tourists' contributions, we have been able to help people in ways beyond our wildest dreams. We've got these champions all around the world. It started small, but suddenly, there's a real groundswell.'