South African Cricketers Visit GWF

Good Work Foundation (GWF) and our partner, Konica Minolta South Africa (KMSA) bizhub, are on a mission to connect young people in the rural communities of Mpumalanga with nature through an up-to-date, engaging and digital conservation literacy syllabus that is evolving within the bizhub Conservation Academy based at GWF’s Hazyview Digital Learning Campus (HDLC).

The goal is to form an emotional connection between wildlife and people, so that at the end of the day, people feel passionate about assuming a sense of responsibility for the wellbeing of our country’s natural heritage.

To increase the exposure of this project, KMSA recently invited two South African cricket players to HDLC, where they were able to see the bizhub Conservation Academy in action.

Pumelela Matshikwe (bizhub Highveld Lions bowler) and Jean Symes (bizhub Highveld Lions batsman) observed as kids from local primary schools learnt about wildlife using tablets and interactive apps. “I have never seen anything like it, these children better realise what they are being given access to. It is huge,” says Matshikwe.

From Hazyview, Pumelela and Jean headed to a secret location where an organisation called Care for Wild rehabilitates orphaned rhinos and almost all of those rhinos are found alone in the Kruger after their mother’s have been killed for their horns.

The long-term vision of the sanctuary, which currently has 25 rhinos of which seven have been adopted by KMSA bizhub, is to release the orphaned rhinos onto land adjacent to the sanctuary. This is land that is secured, and land where each rhino will be protected by a monitor.

“It was the most amazing experience to be so up close with the animal, feeding it and touching its tough, warm skin,” said Pumelela Matshikwe, bowler for the bizhub Highveld Lions. “It’s hard to believe that anyone would hurt the rhino if they have had the opportunity to connect and meet the animal, and most importantly, understand it.”

We have to say that we were thrilled to hear Pumelela say this. It is the reason why, as well as adopting seven rhino, KMSA bizhub have partnered with us to create the bizhub Conservation Academy. You cannot improve conservation without sharing its value with our country’s young people, and allowing them the opportunity to experience our natural heritage. As part of the bizhub Conservation Academy, we have taken 300 rural school into the Kruger, and we were staggered to find out that not one has ever been into the Kruger. And yet many of those same children can see the Kruger if they stand on the roofs of their houses.

Through the bizhub Conservation Academy, we are in the final process of planning for an ‘Introduction to Wildlife’ adult course, which will start in 2016. The learners on this course will spend two weeks at Care for Wild, where they will learn about aspects of animal husbandry, including rhino monitoring and animal tracking.

We will keep everyone up-to-date on the growth of this exciting initiative.

Head of Conservation Academy Byron Ross, and Head of Media and Communications Ryan James gave the two cricket players a tour around the campus and allowed them the opportunity to see Open Learning in action inside the barn.

Head of Conservation Academy Byron Ross, and Head of Media and Communications Ryan James gave the two cricket players a tour around the campus and allowed them the opportunity to see Open Learning in action inside the barn.

As part of the bizhub Conservation Academy, we have taken 300 rural school into the Kruger, and we were staggered to find out that not one has ever been into the Kruger. And yet many of those same children can see the Kruger if they stand on the roofs of their houses.

As part of the bizhub Conservation Academy, we have taken 300 rural school into the Kruger, and we were staggered to find out that not one has ever been into the Kruger. And yet many of those same children can see the Kruger if they stand on the roofs of their houses.

Jean Symes (left) is a batsman and Pumelela Matshikwe is a bowler, both from bizhub Highveld Lions Cricket team. GWF was thrilled to host people who support the education revolution mission that GWF believes in.

Jean Symes (left) is a batsman and Pumelela Matshikwe (right) is a bowler, both from bizhub Highveld Lions Cricket team. GWF was thrilled to host people who support the education revolution mission that GWF believes in.

Compiled by GWF Media Academy.

Comments