Sustainable safaris make sense for conservation
Working with the community has been key to making the Singita Grumeti concession, next to Serengeti National Park in Tanzania, a success — both for the wildlife and local residents
For Mark Witney, the CEO of conservation at Singita, working with communities when conserving wildlife is a no-brainer. "If you’ve got a community working against you, it makes it extremely difficult," he says. The luxury game lodge and safari company started out in 1993 with just one high-end lodge, in the Sabi Sands Game Reserve on the edge of Kruger National Park. Today, it operates 12 luxury camps and lodges in three African countries, and is the custodian of more than 400,000ha of wilderness. Part of Singita’s success lies in its community and conservation strategies, implemented by nonprofit trusts. In Tanzania, this is managed by the Singita Grumeti Fund. In 2002, hedge fund billionaire philanthropist Paul Tudor Jones took over stewardship of the 140,000ha Grumeti concession with the aim of creating a buffer between a growing human population and Serengeti National Park to protect the region’s wildebeest and zebra migrations. Singita came on board in 2006, launching four lodg...
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