Sue Garratt – the co-founder of, and partner in, Dulini lodge in the Sabi Sand Nature Reserve – says the safari lodge's association with Good Work Foundation has been a fruitful, rewarding and symbiotic one.
Sue’s association with GWF goes back to the days when Good Work Foundation CEO and co-founder Kate Groch was tutoring the Varty children and Sue was working at Londolozi. She and others used to gather at Londolozi’s “pap stop” to listen as they recounted their travels around Africa, and “it was so fascinating to hear her very personal stories”.
When the Garratts and other partners bought Dulini in 2012, she reconnected with Kate, and the journey of the lodge and of GWF’s newly opened Hazyview campus ran in parallel.
“I was excited, being a teacher myself and loving the people of the area, to hear about the concept of reimagining education in South Africa. It was such a powerful vision, and I love how GWF has poured so much into it and achieved so much since then,” says Sue.
Dulini’s partnership with GWF, through its esiDulini Community Trust, has entailed supporting the cluster of GWF digital learning campuses in villages around the Sabi Sand reserve – initially at Justicia, and then at Dumphries, where many of the lodge’s staff live.
“We have a longstanding connection with Dumphries village, and a desire to see it flourish,” says Sue. “It’s incredibly exciting to see how investing money in educating a community can make a real and significant difference. Our partnership with GWF is very valuable to us, and our vision to support young people fits perfectly with theirs.”
Sue says having a symbiotic, mutually beneficial relationship between donor and beneficiary is critical. “Our vision is bigger than the bottom line, as our people are very important to us – both our guests and the people we work with. On a personal level, as the Garratt and Davis families, our heart is in seeing people grow, and investing in our communities is important so our Dulini family can benefit and grow.
“Sustainable eco-tourism is directly related to conservation, and it’s essential that we invest in that area for the longevity and legacy of conservation in our area. It also speaks to nation-building and a profound passion to see South Africa blossom, because at grassroots level GWF is changing lives.
“What they do is so significant. When I walk onto campus my heart sings, seeing people who are empowered and facilitators working in their own communities. It’s made a real and tangible difference, empowering them so there is no longer any dependency – just vibrancy.
"Africa has solutions for itself – and GWF is so good at finding them!”