15 November 2011

2011 Responsible Tourism Awards: Two awards for Africa

Robin Pope Safaris, a luxury safari company based in Zambia, was named the joint overall winner of the 2011 Responsible Tourism Awards, together with with Unseen Tours, a social enterprise operating walking tours of London by the homeless.
The Lilongwe Wildlife Centre in Malawi won the other African award for "Best for conservation of wildlife & habitats" in 2011. Africat Okonjima from Namibia was named as "highly commended" in the same category. Congrats!

The Responsible Tourism Awards are organised by founder responsibletravel.com, with support from various media partners, and World Travel Market, where the Awards are annualy given out. The judging process is designed and organised in partnership with the International Centre for Responsible Tourism at Leeds Metropolitan University, and Virgin Holidays have supported the Awards as headline sponsor since 2007.
Since they were founded in 2004, the Awards have attracted over 10,000 nominations from members of the public, leading to 201 unique organisations Awarded from 51 countries around the world.

The Afircan winners/runner ups of the 2011 Awards are:
  • Best for poverty reduction - Robin Pope Safaris, Zambia & Malawi (winner)
    "20 years of commitment to grass roots sustainable community development, like the successful Kawaza Village Tourism Project in Zambia, have distinguished Robin Pope Safaris as a pioneer in responsible tourism. Their contribution to local livelihoods in South Luangwa through education and business development has established an inspiring model that even now is being rolled out to Malawi, with the promise of similar laudable effect."
  • Best for conservation of wildlife & habitats - Lilongwe Wildlife Centre, Malawi (winner)
    "Lilongwe Wildlife Centre is a wildlife rescue, conservation and education centre in the heart of Malawi's capital city. Fending off developers, the centre has reclaimed and revived 90 hectares of urban wilderness to provide sanctuary for rescued, orphaned and injured wild animals, and promotes conservation to locals and tourists alike. It now takes over 20,000 visitors per year, showing its value as a centre for both the people and wildlife of Malawi."
  • Best for conservation of wildlife & habitats - Africat Okonjima, Namibia (highly commeded)
  • Best Accommodation For Local Communities - Semadep  Safari Camp, Kenya (higly commended)
  • Best Accommodation For The Environment - Campi Ya Kanzi, Kenya (higly commended)

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