March 8th is International Women’s Day, so we’re celebrating by highlighting inspiring women in Africa who make a difference through their pioneering work in ecotourism, conservation, and community projects. These women are some of our heroes, and they inspire us every day with their dedication, commitment and vision, and their refusal to accept the status quo. Read their stories and be inspired to make a difference in the lives of those around you. 




Lindiwe has been working in the kitchens at Singita for over 30 years. In that time, culinary trends have come and gone, but Lindiwe has been instrumental – along with her fellow chefs – in developing Singita’s signature style. By fusing Africa’s fabulous local ingredients with the best of international culinary traditions (including those from France, where Lindiwe studied with some of the world’s best chefs), Singita has created a seasonal menu that showcases the wonderful flavors of Africa and supports local farmers and growers. Lindiwe’s career has been a trajectory of personal growth and learning, and she delights in the fact that no matter how much knowledge she acquires, there is always something new to learn and exciting new combinations of ingredients to have fun with.


Chem Chem, situated between Tarangire National Park and Lake Manyara, has done as much as any other destination to revitalize Tanzania’s reputation as a superlative safari destination. Previously a hunting concession, Fabia has transformed Chem Chem into a thriving conservancy where the only shooting that happens is with cameras. Fabia has long maintained that conservation initiatives can only succeed when they involve and benefit adjacent communities. That was her reason for setting up the LiveWildlife NPO which focuses on helping local villages to protect their wildlife, and on providing better education and training opportunities for children and adults alike. The result is a wonderfully balanced ecosystem that gives Tanzanians a meaningful say in the future of their natural heritage.


Children in the Wilderness (CITW) is the environmental education and community upliftment NPO established by leading ecotourism firm, Wilderness Safaris. Since its inception, CITW has focused on educating the next generation of conservation leaders and inspiring young people to see wildlife tourism as a career opportunity, and a way to share the benefits of this industry with their communities. As a Community Engagement Administrator, Agnes’ outreach work involves spending a great deal of time in the villages adjacent to Namibia’s protected areas. The level of trust she has been able to establish came to the fore during 2020 when she spearheaded CITW’s Conservation Heroes campaign in Namibia. This initiative focused on lessening the impact of COVID-19 on communities that had previously been able to rely on ecotourism as a source of revenue. By providing food relief, CITW is able to take away a major source of stress for remote settlements in the country.


No other animal symbolizes the beauty, magnificence, and fragility of Africa’s wildlife in the way that elephants do, and few people have devoted as much time, energy, and passion to caring for these incredible creatures. Adine’s love for elephants is as boundless as Africa’s wild spaces and has seen her not only succeed in her role as MD of Jabulani in South Africa but also inspired her to establish the HERD elephant orphanage – Hoedspruit Elephant Rehabilitation and Development. The essence of the soulful safari experience at Jabulani is the opportunity for guests to have respectful interactions with the Jabulani herd – many of whom were originally orphans, just like the elephants being cared for by HERD. Adine has expanded on her love for elephants to create unique experiences for her guests, and to ensure that time spent at Jabulani is both memorable and meaningful.


Rwanda is a relative newcomer to ecotourism, but the combination of unforgettable mountain gorilla encounters and the warmth and friendliness of its people have propelled the land of a thousand hills to the top of many traveler’s bucket lists. Rwanda is therefore the perfect stage for innovators like Elizabeth Tolu Ojo. She’s one of a new generation of African women who are proving that conservation can begin at home and that there is no need for Africa to continue to rely on overseas NGOs when it comes to creating conservation enterprises that are both financially and ecologically sustainable. Elizabeth is the Director of Operations at the ALU School of Wildlife Conservation (SOWC) in Kigali. SOWC is nurturing tomorrow’s conservation business leaders and working towards the creation of an ethical network of solution-driven leaders who can assist African businesses to be more profitable whilst having a lighter footprint.


Jennifer’s career in Africa has spanned almost the entire history of the modern ecotourism industry, giving her deep insights into what works in African conservation, and what doesn’t. She has distilled this wealth of knowledge and experience into her new role as Co-founder and Conservation Director of Natural Selection, a pioneering safari operator that aims to do things not only differently, but better. Jennifer specializes in identifying ways in which tourism and conservation can work together, and in bringing together people and organizations that share her vision for finding successful solutions for wildlife, for the people that share Africa’s wild places, and for the continent as a whole. Jennifer focuses on raising awareness of conservation challenges, and on channeling funds raised through Natural Selection’s ecotourism endeavors towards positive impact projects.


With Inge’s appointment as General Manager of Conservation, the world-renowned Singita conservation brand now has an all-female conservation team. Inge joins Andrea Ferry (Group Sustainability Coordinator) and Susan Horst (General Manager of Community Partnerships) as part of a dynamic triumvirate of visionary conservation leaders. Their portfolios go to the essence of what Singita stands for – a philosophy that has seen the brand expand to encompass 15 incredible properties across four African nations. In her role overseeing the team, Inge will be ultimately responsible for delivering on Singita’s ambitious conservation, sustainability, and community empowerment promises and ensuring that the brand continues to be an African conservation pathfinder in addition to running some of the continent’s most remarkable lodges.

If you’ve been inspired by the stories of these remarkable women, contact Alluring Africa to see how you too can make a difference in Africa.