“Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime”
This famous proverb underpins the ethos of the Southern African Wildlife College. It’s not just about providing our students with an education or developing human capital for conservation organisations. It’s about providing people with the skills they need to do their jobs; which in turn allows them to feed themselves and their families. In addition to this, the College understands that “feeding” isn’t just about putting food in mouths but about instilling pride and self-esteem through personal growth and career advancement.
Since its inception in 1996, the College has trained 8291 students (end 2012) from 46 countries, but mostly from countries in the SADC region, in natural resource management. Close on 700 students have completed qualification courses and over 7 500 students have been through targeted skills development programmes, short courses and learnerships. Approximately 80% of the learners who have received training at the SAWC are still in wildlife management and most of the graduates have been promoted to more senior management positions. By expanding its reach and becoming involved in training ventures and projects off-site the College has also capacity-built over 2000 previously unemployed South Africans.
As a continuation of the role the College is playing in the development of skills and competence, it has developed programmes focusing on strengthening existing and emerging enterprises within the trans-frontier conservation areas (TFCAs) in the SADC sub-region. This allows for greater participation of local communities in the tourism and conservation value chain and the creation of alternative livelihoods other than a total reliance on agriculture and natural resources which areunder growing threat.
With the valued support of our donors, Peace Parks Foundation, WWF-South Africa, our partner organisations, government and conservation agencies across the region, the Southern African Wildlife College continues on its unwavering course to train, develop, empower and inspire people employed in the conservation and environmental sector. It is committed to making a real and measurable difference.
See the Southern African Wildlife College’s comprehensive 2012 Annual Review by clicking here.