Please note, an announcement was made earlier this year that from 2018 the CWF levy would be compulsory, however, due to the urgency of the current situation, the decision was made to bring the policy forward. The time has come to stop discussing and deliberating and to take action.
As of the 1st of July 2017, this levy will now be compulsory for all guests staying at Elephant’s Eye, Hwange. The amount is set at $15.00 per person per night, payable either on invoice or at the lodge.
SO WHAT WILL THESE FUNDS GO TOWARDS?
Simply put, without wildlife there is no tourism. This is an issue that directly affects not only national parks and private lodge owners, but agents and the tourism industry as a whole. For this reason, in 2016 the Conservation and Wildlife Fund, was founded with Hideaways as one of the founding members – a non-profit trust formed out of a collaborative group of concerned conservationists and stakeholders in the Hwange National Park region with a goal to take action on critical conservation issues affecting the area.
Within Africa, we are now sadly at a crucial time where statistics show that in the last three years over 100,000 elephants have been killed by poachers, there are as few as 12,000 lions left in Southern Africa listing them as vulnerable on the IUCN Red List, and our rhino population is sitting precariously on the verge of going extinct.
We all need to do our part to protect our lions, elephants and other wildlife in Africa. The funds to support the fight against their decline will be allocated to: the deployment of additional anti-poaching units on the peripheries of Hwange; coordinating and supporting the efforts of the various anti-poaching teams that have been set up by NGOs and operators around Hwange and providing support to the law enforcement efforts of Zim Parks, Forestry, and the Gwayi Conservancy.
Without the CWF levy that funds these efforts, the vast herds of game and big cats which are the park’s biggest draw card will be severely diminished in the next few years and, in turn, guest numbers will drop. This will only further hinder the conservation efforts and eventually, the system will no longer be sustainable. As a responsible eco-lodge with a prime focus on sustainability and conservation, we simply cannot allow this to happen.
Our guests play a vital role in species preservation and we greatly appreciate their contribution to its conservation. Guests who stay at Elephant’s Eye, Hwange, perhaps without realizing it, show their passion for conservation and sustainability by choosing our lodge over other properties. We have no doubt that they will understand the urgency of the situation and realize that we are doing this in part to ensure that their future safaris remain a possibility.