THE ISSUE

There are several threats leading to the need for restoration efforts across Africa and around the world such as overgrazed agricultural land, climate change and natural disasters, land development and illegal logging. The loss of forests results in increased greenhouse gas emissions, disrupted water cycles which contributes to soil erosion, and has devastating effects for the majority of the world’s land-based species. This is an issue that can quickly have a powerful ripple effect.

THE SOLUTION

Sustainable safaris are a powerful component of land conservation through the support of both national parks and private reserves. Properly managed conservation areas are crucial and sometimes full-blown restoration projects are necessary. Reforestation projects involve scientific research and planning to remove and replace invasive species with indigenous ones. Species are carefully introduced to closely mimic a natural environment.

HOW YOU CAN HELP

You can donate to this cause directly with either a one-time or monthly donation:

Bisate tree planting

Here are a few examples of costs associated with supporting reforestation efforts:

  • $50 will allow you to participate in Grootbos’ tree planting efforts
  • $150 will employ a tree caretaker at Grootbos for one month

WHO WE SUPPORT

Bisate tree planting

BISATE

Located next to Volcanoes National Park in Rwanda, Wilderness Safaris’ Bisate Lodge has embarked on a bold mission of reforestation. Their partnership with Rwanda Development Board (RDB) and the African Wildlife Foundation has resulted in a 27.8 hectare increase for the mountain gorilla habitat as of January 2018, and their work continues. Many other species have benefited as well with returning residents including the tree hyrax, serval, side-striped jackal, Egyptian mongoose, and numerous bird and butterfly species. The project is supported by an on-site nursery producing more than 100,000 seedlings per year. Almost 30,000 trees of several indigenous species have grown to maturity and no longer require Wilderness Safaris’ care.

Grootbos Future Trees Project

GROOTBOS

Located between Cape Town and the start of the Garden Route, Grootbos Private Nature Reserve is home to one of the last ten milkwood forests on earth. In 2006, a devastating wildfire decimated large areas of this precious forest. The Future Trees Project started in 2008 as an ambitious effort to scientifically restore the forest to its natural state as evidenced in photographs dating back to 1937. Following this plan, visitors are given the opportunity to plant their own indigenous trees from the nursery that is cared for on site.