Archive for August, 2016

Tentative delivery date set for Air Tanzania’s first Bombardier Q400NG

AIR TANZANIA GEARS UP FOR FIRST NEW AIRCRAFT DELIVERY IN A GENERATION

(Posted 31st August 2016)

(ATCL’s newest bird, a Bombardier Q400NG, msn 4495)

Still registered with a Canadian tail number is Air Tanzania’s new Bombardier Q400NG now undergoing ground and aerial testing before formally being handed over on the 13th of September to airline and government representatives. The aircraft however will be put on the Tanzanian registry and eventually bear a 5H registration number, details to be advised here when available.
Captains and co-pilots are presently finalising their type conversion training to be able to fly this aircraft type when it has been cleared for operations by Tanzanian aviation authorities.
The ferry flight from the Bombardier assembly plant is expected to take an estimated three days after taking off from Canada on the 16th of September before the aircraft then lands, tentatively, on the 19th of September in Dar es Salaam.
The assembly of a second such aircraft is also advanced, due for delivery a few weeks later, no doubt then boosting Air Tanzania’s operational capacity to resume flights to more domestic destinations and increase frequencies on key routes.

A travelling lion cub, Mama Simba news and a lot more from the EWASO Lions

EWASO Lions news updates

Promoting Human-Lion Coexistence in Northern Kenya
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New Cub Is A Remarkable Traveller

Say hello to our newest lion who was born early this year to Napirai.

“This little cub is a young traveller and survivor," said Jeneria, our Field Operations and Community Manager. “The cub moves more than any cub we have ever seen.” Our team tracked Napirai and her cub (pictured above) for over 15 km (9 mi) a few weeks ago – a long journey for a cub we estimate is three-months-old.

Mother and cub walked all night, through villages and livestock areas, and settled in thick bush in the early morning. Although mothers usually hide their cubs in bushes to go hunting, Napirai does not leave her cub alone. She is constantly on the move with the young one close in tow.

We will keep you updated as we continue to monitor the little travelling cub.

Read »

ae620ae1-c348-47c8-8a76-e48ec1a1e9e6.jpgMama Simba Women Learn New Skills to Tackle Litter

In northern Kenya, discarded litter is a widespread threat to wildlife and the landscape, and our Mama Simba women’s group has led cleanup efforts with local communities. Taking this a step further, we sent our two Mama Simba coordinators to western Kenya where they received training from Zingira Nyanza Community Crafts. The women learnt how to repurpose trash and sustainable materials into handicrafts – a win-win for the environment and livelihoods. The women have returned to Samburu eager to employ their new skills for a cleaner Kenya.

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ab2688d9-ea6e-40c3-87cc-97aa91363b15.jpgLion Kids Camp Held in New Area to Educate Herders

This month we held a Lion Kids Camp in neighboring Laikipia County, a key area for Kenya’s lions. We partnered with Loisaba Conservancy to hold this Camp which educated local herding children on conservation. The 24 children were inspired through lessons, games, and even a safari on World Lion Day. Read on to see photos and the activities that will shape these future wildlife leaders.

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7c73ebb6-7d67-4a3a-b97d-76b9f6af525a.jpgTickets for San Francisco Wildlife Expo On Sale Now

It’s that time of year again when we travel to San Francisco for the annual Wildlife Expo hosted by the Wildlife Conservation Network. We will give a talk and be present throughout the day at our table where we will have Kenyan crafts for sale. Tickets go fast, so don’t miss out!

Buy tickets »

efa12cee-dd35-48d5-98ba-eed1979034f1.jpgMake a Donation to Mark World Lion Day

This month marked World Lion Day, and it’s not too late to do something to honour lions. Make a donation today and 100% of your donation will go to our conservation efforts. With your help we can ensure a future for Africa’s most iconic species.

Donate now »

c5891efc-862b-4a0f-abd3-36206e534e13.jpgPhoto of the Month

August 26th was #NationalDogDay and so we gave Kura some extra love, even though it seems every day is Kura Day in our Camp. In August’s Photo of the Month, Kura sits with Jeneria, Nape, and Letoiye on our deck to take in the sunset.

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August 2016 news update from the Northern Rangelands Trust.

News from the Northern Rangelands Trust …

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WILD FRONTIERS
Zack
TNC & NRT celebrate #NationalDogDay

Friday 26th August was National Dog Day in the USA. To celebrate, raise awareness, and fundraise; The Nature Conservancy launched a campaign that featured NRT’s anti-poaching dog Zack – pictured above with handlers Joseph and Lawrence.

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Women generate over USD 6,000 for conservancies in 6 months

Women across seven NRT member conservancies have presented cheques to their conservancy managers, as conservation fees from their BeadWORKS revenue. A total of KSH 662,940 (USD 6,500) has been generated for conservancies during the first six months of 2016.

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Danish Ambassador Visits Westgate

On the 27th of July 2016, Mette Knudsen, the Danish Ambassador to Kenya, visited Westgate Conservancy. The Danish International Development Agency, DANIDA, is one of NRT’s principal donors and the Ambassador’s visit was a celebration of longterm support and partnership. It was also an opportunity for Ms. Knudsen to award certificates to morans graduating from the Moran Economic Empowerment Programme.

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Peace in June & July

  • 10 stolen cows returned to owners
  • 76 stolen camels recovered
  • 6 successful dialogue meetings
  • 15 peace awareness meetings
  • 1 cattle raid prevented

Read more

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Jane Goodall’s appeal …

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Change.org
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My name is Jane Goodall and today is the day you can help choose the fate, for better or for worse, of our world. I have spent my life living with and understanding animals. I have learned the value of their remarkable capacity for emotions, empathy and intelligence and then shared my discoveries with you all. Right now, what makes our world so precious – these very creatures – is in great danger.

Tens of thousands of great apes, elephants, tigers, sharks, and other incredible animals are being slaughtered for the wildlife trade every year. At the Jane Goodall Institute, my colleagues and I work every single day to end wildlife trafficking, but we cannot do it alone. We need someone like you, who truly cares about their suffering and the cost of wildlife trafficking, to help us.

When you join us, we can build a movement through social media to stop wildlife trafficking together.

Join me in ending wildlife trafficking by taking to social media to make your voice heard.

I’m meeting with some of the top conservation leaders in the world this year, and urgently need your support to tell them you want wildlife trafficking to be a priority for the international community to focus on.

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By acting together on social media, we can stand up for what we believe in, protecting our beautiful and endangered wildlife from being hunted for trophies and other “parts” to be sold and auctioned off.

We use platforms like Facebook and Instagram everyday to stay close, to interact and to demonstrate who we are. These everyday tools are powerful – by using them for good, we can help connect and organize, adding further pressure and momentum to let our networks, policy makers, change–making groups and the rest of the world hear our collective message about what we believe in. This is truest demonstration of who we are.

That is why social media is one of my reasons for hope, and that hope is always waiting for you to find it and share it. Together, we can inspire millions of people to demand, and achieve change.

Use your social media networks to tell the world that you stand with our wildlife and want the world to put an end to wildlife trafficking.

Post it. Gram it. Stop wildlife trafficking in its tracks.

Thank you,

Jane Goodall

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Sign Jane’s petition
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Qatar Airways credited for new rules for tourist Visas

NEW AGREEMENT REACHED IN QATAR TO FACILITATE ISSUE OF VISAS FOR TOURISTS

(Posted 31st August 2016)

Qatar Airways and Qatar Tourism Authority sign partnership with VFS Global to identify streamlined tourist visa application process

Qatar Airways and Qatar Tourism Authority signed today an agreement with VFS Global – leading provider of visa processing services – in the presence of Qatar’s Ministry of Interior. The agreement paves the way for an efficient and transparent tourist visa application system that caters to travellers from around the world looking to visit Qatar.

The agreement comes as Qatar steps up efforts to attract and welcome more visitors to Qatar in line with Qatar National Tourism Sector Strategy 2030 (QNTSS).

The agreement will enable Qatar to identify and implement the ideal visa solutions for its visitors, while capitalising on VFS Global’s expertise in developing multi-platform visa services, and Qatar Airways’ extensive international footprint.

Qatar Airways Group Chief Executive Mr. Akbar Al Baker, said: “Qatar Airways has been bringing tourists to Qatar for nearly two decades and today’s announcement marks another milestone in our commitment to making Doha a world-class tourist destination. Qatar’s tourism industry is experiencing exponential growth and the visa advancements announced today will further support our country’s vision to invite and welcome visitors from around the world to experience all that Qatar has to offer. We look forward to welcoming more passengers on-board, at Hamad International Airport and into Qatar, as a result of today’s initiative. I would like to sincerely thank the Ministry of Interior’s General Directorate of Nationality, Borders and Expatriates Affairs, and Qatar Tourism Authority for their partnership in making today’s announcement possible. This initiative is a great example of what we can accomplish by working together, and we have other initiatives planned to further enhance Qatar tourism‘.

From left to right: Lieutenant Colonel Muhammad Rashid Al Mazroui, Director of the Airport Passports Department; H.E. Mr. Akbar Al Baker, GCEO of Qatar Airways; Mr. Hassan Al Ibrahim, Chief Tourism Development Officer at Qatar Tourism Authority; Mr. Zubin Karkaria, CEO of VFS Global; in a group photo after the announcement.

From left to right: Lieutenant Colonel Muhammad Rashid Al Mazroui, Director of the Airport Passports Department; H.E. Mr. Akbar Al Baker, GCEO of Qatar Airways; Mr. Hassan Al Ibrahim, Chief Tourism Development Officer at Qatar Tourism Authority; Mr. Zubin Karkaria, CEO of VFS Global; in a group photo after the announcement.

H.E. Mr. Akbar Al Baker, GCEO of Qatar Airways addressing the media during the press conference held in Doha today. In attendance, Lieutenant Colonel Muhammad Rashid Al Mazroui, Director of the Airport Passports Department; Mr. Hassan Al Ibrahim, Chief Tourism Development Officer at Qatar Tourism Authority; Mr. Zubin Karkaria, CEO of VFS Global.

H.E. Mr. Akbar Al Baker, GCEO of Qatar Airways addressing the media during the press conference held in Doha today. In attendance, Lieutenant Colonel Muhammad Rashid Al Mazroui, Director of the Airport Passports Department; Mr. Hassan Al Ibrahim, Chief Tourism Development Officer at Qatar Tourism Authority; Mr. Zubin Karkaria, CEO of VFS Global.

In a signing ceremony held in Doha, Mr. Hassan Al Ibrahim, Chief Tourism Development Officer at Qatar Tourism Authority, commented on the development that Qatar’s tourism sector has witnessed in recent years. ‘It is a great source of pride for all of us at QTA to be making this announcement only two and half years after the launch of QNTSS. Facilitating the visa application process is an important step in our drive to increase the number of visitor arrivals to Qatar, and in raising inbound tourism spending. This agreement is also testament to the public-private-partnerships that are employed in the development of the sector, creating positive impacts across the tourism value chain and the broader economy‘.

Qatar Airways and QTA will be working with VFS Global and MOI over the next months to establish the new tourist visa application process, after which full details of the new system will be announced. The steps taken are expected to increase Qatar’s openness ranking on the Travel and Tourism Competitiveness Index.

Brigadier Abdullah Salim Al Ali, Director General of General Directorate of Nationality, Borders and Expatriates Affairs, said: ‘Qatar’s Ministry of Interior continuously strives to make government services as smooth and efficient as possible, while ensuring that Qatar’s security is not compromised. We are pleased to take developments in our tourist visa application services to the next level by working with our valued partners Qatar Airways and Qatar Tourism Authority. We believe this agreement will optimise resources as well security, while creating a positive impact on Qatar’s image and economy‘.

VFS Global offers convenient and efficient visa application services that can be accessed online by travellers from across the world, and the partnership aims to support passengers along their journey as well as to facilitate Qatar’s booming tourism industry by simplifying the tourist visa process.

Mr. Zubin Karkaria, CEO, VFS Global said: ‘We are pleased to partner with Qatar Airways and Qatar Tourism Authority to make the Qatar visa application process available to travellers globally, through online and mobile platforms. These new channels, which are sure to prove convenient and beneficial for visitors here, signify the next level of flexibility and security in the visa application process. This service will leverage on our experience and reliability in providing seamless visa application services, and will act as an important tool to boost tourism and make Qatar a preferred tourist destination’.

Media attending the press conference

Media attending the press conference

Qatar Airways delegation attending the press conference.

Qatar Airways delegation attending the press conference.

It should however be noted that all visas are approved and issued at the sole discretion of Qatar’s Ministry of Interior.

Zimbabwe – A World of Wonders

ZIMBABWE TOURISM AUTHORITY’S NELLY NHAURANWA SHARES HER IMPRESSIONS FROM ATLANTA

(Posted 31st August 2016)

ZIMBABWE A WORLD OF WONDERS, A HIGHLIGHT AT THE BUSIEST AIRPORT IN THE WORLD

August 2016

Story by Nellia Nhauranwa in Atlanta Ga, USA

ZTA’s Marketing Manager Americas Nellia Nhauranwa (right) with David Vogt, Art Program Manager Engineering of Jackson Hartsfield Atlanta Airport (left)

Walking through the pedestrian corridor of the Transportation Mall between the T Gates and Concourse A, one cannot help but be awestruck by the extraordinary pieces of stone sculpture towering this walkway of Jackson Hartsfield Atlanta Airport in the US. Gigantic pieces of stone have been transfigured to tell the Zimbabwean story through ingenious hands of artists as a form of expression by the sculptors. This marvelous showcase is the Zimbabwe Art Programme entitled Zimbabwe, A Tradition in Stone which is a permanent collection of contemporary stone sculptures and is one of the largest publicly owned and exhibited collections of its kind. According to David Vogt, Art Program Manager Engineering of Jackson Hartsfield Atlanta Airport, the Zimbabwean contemporary art movement is very significant in Africa and Atlanta Airport being the busiest airport in the world is a great place to showcase it.

Zimbabwe Art Pieces along the walkway

To create each piece, the talented Zimbabwean artists skillfully hand-carved the stone to rough out the initial form without the use of power tools. Next the artists smoothed out select surfaces with sandpaper. Wax was applied to some of the surfaces to create contrasting textures that enhance the work’s beauty and emotive qualities. This is the work of twelve of Zimbabwe’s top artists such as Nicholas Mukomberanwa, Dominic Benhura, Tapfumanei Gutsa to mention but a few. To augment the Zimbabwean story is an amazing array of LED lit images of Zimbabwe’s wonders. These include the Majestic Victoria Falls, Wonderful people and Culture, The Grand Medieval Palace, Great Zimbabwe, Rich History and Heritage, Pristine Wildlife and others and are mounted on the walls of the entire walkway. Passengers are engaged as they travel through the airport and cannot escape the marvel of the stories of the Zimbabwean discourse projected by these pieces. Themes of the pieces and pictures range from the importance of family, humanity’s relationship with nature and the day to day Zimbabwean lifestyle.

“Jackson Hartsfield Airport is the busiest airport in the world with 101,491,106 passengers travelling through it from all over the world per year. We serve 2500 flights per day and we are also rated the most efficient airport in the world. We have millions passing through this airport every year and it is our hope that the themes explored by this Zimbabwean art resonate with passengers of all backgrounds.” highlighted Vogt. Rich mbira music gently strums in the background along the walkway to give a harmonizing effect and enhance the traveler’s experience. This does not only appeal to the foreign passenger but even the Zimbabwean diaspora as well who will immediately connect to their roots and want to visit the destination.

The feedback pertaining to the exhibition is overwhelming with some passengers wanting to connect with the origin country of the sculptures to have a personal experience with the destination. “I had one passenger come to me who was travelling for a funeral but she confessed emotionally that the gallery’s pieces helped her to calm down and she became more confident of whatever she was currently going through.” mused Vogt. Such memories have a pull factor to Zimbabwe hence the gallery adds spur to the ZTA’s marketing efforts in the US and beyond. The Zimbabwe Art program also attracts school and Universities tours, senior citizens, the visually impaired tours, who experience the stonework through touch and other specialized tours. “While this is a permanent collection, the airport is open for further collaboration with Zimbabwe to enhance the exhibition and other programs within our rotating exhibitions.” he added. The US is a market of immense potential that needs to be tapped into. The 2016 First Half Statistics Report states that Zimbabwe received 31 679 arrivals from 22 774 arrivals in 2015. The exponential growth of the US market is something to leverage on and invest resources in to fully capture this market to Zimbabwe A World of Wonders.

The Treasures of Swaziland

News from the Kingdom of Swaziland

The Golden Treasures of Swaziland

Swaziland might be small but it boasts giant scenery and massive adventures. Whether you are seeking adventure or breath-taking scenery in this small, but majestic country or planning on travelling to Swaziland for a well-deserved break, we’ve got you covered! For those who are looking for a holiday getaway, here are our top 10 things to do in Swaziland:

Ngwenya Glass is situated in the region of Mbabane and is known for giving back to the community of Swaziland by encouraging everyone to send their recycled glass to Ngwenya who then pay the community for their recycled glass. The factory is operated by locals who create beautiful glass sculptures made in all shapes and sizes. Visitors can enjoy a tour, where they can view the glass sculpture being made. All artifacts can be purchased, from small animal sculptures to wine glasses and jugs.

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Just a few kilometers from Ngwenya Glass is Ngwenya Old Mine, one of the oldest mines in the world and located in Mbabane. Assisted by a tour guide up to Lion Cavern you will find yourself taking in the history of the mine as well as luscious views of what was once an iron mine – active over 43 000 years ago.

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The National Museum is a great place to visit if it is your first time in Swaziland and if you are looking to find out more about the history of the Swazi culture. Find out what tools they used, what they wore and what they used to eat. It is a wonderful way to soak up the local culture. The museum also shows you a short video of a traditional wedding and is situated in Lombamba, Ezulwini.

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King Sobhuza 11 Memorial Park which is also in the region of Lombamba, Ezulwini offers you the opportunity to learn more about the King’s life. Find out how he received his name and how he stood up against his tribe to ensure that he got the best education possible to make himself a better king.

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Mantenga Cultural Village is another great visit for those looking for the rich traditions of the Swaziland culture and is situated in the region of Ezulwini. It all starts off with traditional signing followed by traditional dances from both men and women in traditional outfits. After the dances the youth are taken on a different tour to adults, both taken around the village to view traditional huts and Swazi traditions. Questions are welcomed and this gives all visitors a great understanding of the beautiful Swazi culture.

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House on Fire, although an unusual name, captures the local arts and culture of Swaziland and is situated in Malkerns, Manzini. Famous for the annual MTN Bushfire which is a music and arts festival, visitors will find themselves enjoying unique arts & crafts and taste the heavenly cuisine at the restaurant.

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Next year’s date for the festival has already been set for May 26th – 28th 2017.

Mlilwane Wildlife Sanctuary is situated amongst lush vegetation and high mountains of Ezulwini Valley, where wildlife roam free. Find yourself appreciating nature by mountain biking, cycling, walking, game driving or horse riding amongst buck, wildebeest and zebra. Enjoy a relaxing lunch overlooking a scenic dam with buck roaming amongst you. The accommodation offers family, standard and bee hive rooms to escape your busy lifestyle.

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Sibebe Rock is one of the largest granite rocks in the world located just 10km outside of Mbabane. Looking up to this exposed granite rock it looks like it is never ending. If you are adventurous enough, there are hikes up to the top of this majestic rock. The hike is not for the faint-hearted and is a full day excursion, so don’t forget your water bottle, sun screen and hat. When you reach the top though, you will find yourself speechless, overlooking the beauty that Swaziland has to offer.

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Malolotja Nature Reserve is surrounded by untouched mountains of Hhohho Mbabane, where you can find gorgeous species of birds. This reserve offers bird watching, hikes, mountain biking, fishing and the very sought after canopy tour. The canopy tour consists of 12 slides through the lush mountains and is perfect for team building or family activities.

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Hlane Royal National Park is the place to go if you are looking for one of the big five. Find yourself on a game drive on the lookout for elephants, rhino, lion, giraffe and many other species. Hlane also offers self-catering rondavels for those looking for a family getaway.

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No matter what you are looking for in your African adventure, Swaziland will be sure to have it covered, plus more!

For more information visit: http://www.thekingdomofswaziland.com/

About STA
The Swaziland Tourism Authority (STA) was established by an act of parliament, the Tourism Authority, Act of 2001. It was established as a public enterprise. In terms of the Act the following objectives have been determined for STA;

  • Develop the tourism sector as a national priority in an environmentally sustainable and culturally acceptable manner,
  • Coordinate and facilitate the implementation of government policies and strategies on tourism,
  • Market Swaziland as a tourism destination through the provision of a platform for industry stakeholders,
  • Encourage, facilitate and promote local and foreign investment in the tourism industry, and
  • Ensure the contribution of tourism to the socio-economic development and continued improvement of quality of life in the Kingdom of Swaziland

www.thekingdomofswaziland.com

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