This month we bid adieu to our Elephant’s Eye, Hwange lodge manager Blessed Chalibamba, who although leaving his role as lodge manager, will remain on as a shareholder of the lodge. Closely involved with the lodge from the very start, Blessed helped build it from the ground up and even slept there in a little tent, in the beginning, to make sure everything was running smoothly. Our sleep-out deck, The Eye, was built entirely by him.
When the build of the lodge was complete and it was time to find a manager, Blessed was involved in the search and it eventually became clear that he was the best man for the job. His passion and enthusiasm outrivaled all the other candidates. And in April 2014, Blessed was appointed the manager of Elephant’s Eye, Hwange. Since then he brought his energy, expertise, generous spirit, and uniquely Zimbabwean hospitality to all aspects of managing the lodge.
Blessed has a background and a passion for guiding and would often do double duty taking guests out on game drives to share his special love of the bush and add that personal touch. He wanted to give guests the thrilling wildlife experiences that drew them to Africa, on our concession and in Hwange National Park. Our new manager, Milton, is actually an old friend of Blessed’s from earlier guiding days and also has extensive guiding experience himself, he has Blessed’s personal seal of approval and will carry on the good work that he started.
As part of his legacy, Blessed has chosen to sponsor 10 students from Dingani Primary School to complete their schooling. Through the lodge’s involvement with the school, Blessed has developed a special place in his heart for the school, its pupils, and their circumstances. His sponsorship of these students is truly an inspiration and a valuable contribution to the upliftment of the local community. If you would like to help as well please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Blessed consistently received the highest praise from our guests, with special mention made of how welcome and well-treated he and his team made them feel. He was also a great friend to everyone on the Hideaways team and we will greatly miss his infectious smile and distinctive dreadlocks around the lodge. We thank him for all his hard work and dedication over the last four years and although we look forward to his continued involvement at the lodge, we wish him all the best for his future.