Two South Africans are braving the bush and the big 5 to raise funds for their fellow safari guides; they will live off the land, defending themselves with what they can find.
Greater Kruger, South Africa (14 August 2020) – The economic lockdown has left millions in the tourism industry with nothing. Retrenchments and lack of access to public funding have meant many have gone without salaries for going on six months now.
Men and women with families to support have struggled. It is this struggle that has driven Josh Beaton and Dane Kincaid-Smith to the extreme!
The best friends have started an adventure to live in the bush without any protection, surrounded by the wilds of Greater Kruger. Their location is being kept anonymous, but it is no picnic; they are living every day, fighting for their lives against the elements, wild animals, and finding food and water.
Why would anyone want to live in big five territories without protection? Well, it’s a crazy idea, crazy enough to help them raise R1.7million (give or take depending on the exchange rate of the day) for their fellow safari guides and game rangers.
“Many tour operators, as well as safari guides, rely almost exclusively on foreign visitors. Due to the international travel ban, this has not been possible and has left many people in a financial crisis. For the past five months, we have had no foreign clients and our businesses have been left stagnant, generating no income.”
The money they raise will offer some relief to 100 guides that are currently going without any aid. They will stay out in the bush as long as it takes. They really hope to survive through each night, just like every family is hoping to survive the economic lockdown currently in place in South Africa. Josh and Dane entered the wilds on the 10th of August and are currently on day four. They had some close calls with elephants yesterday but are still going strong!
The guys are keeping followers updated via video when they can. The videos are being uploaded to YouTube and all form part of a series. They hope more people hear their story and get involved, either by donating or by watching and sharing their adventure.
You can donate to their cause here. Take a look at their promo video below. They have already started sharing videos, including one where they track down a kill that happened just 60 meters from their “base camp”.