In 2001, the Botswana safari company Desert and Delta Safaris embarked upon an ambitious programme to train up local people so that they could manage its camps. So far, its citizen management training programme has trained and developed over 20 local managers, at a cost to Desert and Delta of BWP 100,000.00 per student, since the company covers all the costs to ensure there is no financial barrier to entry. While its goal was to have all its camps managed by Botswana citizens by 2014, Desert and Delta achieved this by the end of 2013.
The programme has been a success with guests too. Since the company started operating camps with only local managers it has seen much more engagement between tourists and locals while on safari. Furthermore, the managers’ commitment to running the camps as sustainably as possible runs far deeper, since the place they are looking after really is home.