The effect of the Worldwide Covid19 pandemic on Tourism is catastrophic and has left thousands of FGASA guides and their families in financial difficulties. Many of the guides have been laid off, had their salaries cut and, in some cases, have not been paid at all. The dire situation is compounded by the fact that many guides, as we know, rely heavily on gratuities from their guests each month to make ends meet and there is no end date in sight as to how long this lockdown on world tourism will last.
As a travel writer that has specialized in bush lodges and safaris, I have come into contact with many Field Guides over the course of my travels. Having worked with organizations that train guides, I know how important it is for the lodges to be occupied so that the guides can work and earn a living. But all that changed on March 27th when the South African lockdown began. Now FGASA has stepped up with THIS initiative to help those guides who find themselves unable to follow their chosen career path through no fault of their own.
All reserves, lodges and operators that work with FGASA, would never obtain the support of the travelling public, were not for our outstanding FGASA qualified guides. The Natural and Cultural experiences delivered by these skilled FGASA guides, coupled with unique hospitality services, is what makes guests come back repeatedly. We at FGASA believe that our guides form an integral part of our tourism industry and devote their lives to continuously improve on their qualifications in pursuit of service excellence out in the field or at any tourism-orientated establishment.
Their dedication to this end can never be in doubt and all of us connected to these unbelievably passionate individuals are distressed at their plight. As such, we as FGASA, the authority on setting standards for nature guides across Southern Africa, have decided to launch a fundraising project to raise money to help our guides and their families survive this crisis.
Our aim is to raise enough money to help as many FGASA registered guides as possible so that we are able to allocate an equal amount of money to each guide in need in an attempt to lessen the impact of this dreadful pandemic. Guides can decide to access this money or use it towards their annual subs.
R 580 helps one guide
R 5 800 helps 10 guides
R 50 800 helps 100 guides
R 500 800 helps 1000 guides …. and so on…
FYI: Financial donations are not limited to any specific amount and can be whatever you can afford.
100% of the funds raised and labelled FGASA GUIDE FUND will be utilised for the FGASA GUIDE FUND. All transactions will be recorded and audited for absolute transparency.
By donating you are:
- Making it possible for guides to pay their annual subscriptions which enables all working guides to remain up to date, legal and able to improve their qualifications
- Reducing the crisis situation for our guides by assisting them financially.
- Enabling and supporting FGASA guides to put food on the table for themselves and their families
Thank you for taking the time to support the FGASA guides and to assist us to achieve this goal. We will continue this campaign until we have enough funds to achieve our targets and the Covid-19 crisis ends. Should we not reach our targets, the funds will be allocated equally amongst current FGASA guides in good standing. Hopefully, the lockdown will be lifted soon so that Tourism picks up, thus enabling our guides to start working and earning a living again.
Should you have any suggestions or queries regarding this fund, please feel free to email Michelle du Plessis (FGASA Managing Director) at firstname.lastname@example.org or donate via the FGASA website, https://www.fgasa.co.za/campaigns/guide-fund
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