Mabula Game Lodge are delighted to announce that the first two candidates have received their FGASA qualification and have completed the Mabula Guide Training internship. The pilot program was born in 2019 from a need to address the skills gaps within the industry and to offer upliftment within the Bela Bela community. After a pause during the lockdowns last year the dynamic duo who were part of the first selection have received their offers for full time employment as Junior Guides on the prestigious Mabula Private Reserve.
The Guide internship program offers locals the opportunity to receive training and a national qualification recognised by Cathseta. The interns successfully completed the training modules and were ably mentored through the process whilst being accommodated at Mabula and offered board, lodging and uniforms.
KG (Kgagelo Kekana) hails from Polokwane Limpopo originally and has a huge passion for learning. He is thrilled with his achievement and offers gratitude to his mentor Ben and the rest of the guiding team at Mabula. KGs advice to other young learners is: “Sometimes things take a long time to happen and just keep going and eventually you will succeed”
Tshepo Loni is a local and although he originally dreamed of becoming a Geography teacher, he felt that the opportunity was too good to refuse and is determined to grow through the ranks at Mabula into a senior position. His passion is the fauna that sustains all the wildlife and wants to find a way to capture the nuggets of magic in the role of trees and vegetation. He talks about the journey “it was a tough journey to get here, coming from a humble background my proud Mother who is the lioness in my life taught me that perseverance is the mother of all success”. I plan to keep learning and eventually to attain my FGASA 3.
The program is very comprehensive and starts off with the students learning about the different areas of the lodge from reception, to housekeeping to food and beverage. Thereafter they learn about every aspect of the natural environment in a training environment that encompassed 18 modules covering everything from biomes, animal behaviour, birds, reptiles, vegetation, and guiding principles to weather and astronomy.
“The goal of the Academy is to identify individuals from the community who are passionate and show true dedication to the field and offer them an opportunity at Mabula for a formal qualification whilst supporting the country’s transformation agenda.” Comments Kim Allen the Resident Manager at Mabula. The Academy seeks to be different in the way it operates, as an institution that facilitates training for employment. It responds directly to the needs of the industry, by sourcing and offering targeted training that leads directly to employment or work in the industry. The candidates are required to have a PDP on application and must submit their CV for consideration to email@example.com
Mabula Game Lodge is situated in the Mabula Private Game Reserve home to the Big Five. Set against the Waterberg Mountains this 12 000ha reserve is only a two-hour drive from Johannesburg and offers excellent safari options as well as a host of other activities such as guided walks, quad bike trails, horseback safaris and hot air balloon safaris.