World Ranger Day

World Ranger Day celebrates the work that rangers do to protect the world’s natural and cultural treasures and commemorates rangers killed or injured in the line of duty.

We asked each of Tintswalo Safari Lodge’s Rangers, why they decided to become a Ranger…

10686970_10203464590669094_705567553723996498_n

Fritz Breytenbach, Tintswalo Safari Lodge Head Ranger, was born in the Lowveld and spent every waking moment in the bush. Weekends were spent fishing and exploring. Fritz started guiding professionally at the age of 19 in the Waterberg. Now at 33 years old, it’s become more than just his life’s passion. It his life goal to keep guiding and continue exploring Africa’s breath taking scenery, and inspiring people as he goes along. Walking and Tracking is his specialty. With several thousand hours walking guests into Big 5 areas, Fritz relishes the opportunity to share his experience and put together an exciting Safari Adventure for his guests.

11054860_10155470539205788_3672964927173234264_nAlistair Leuner, Tintswalo Safari Lodge Assistant Head Ranger, grew up listening to his Father’s bedtime stories of the African Bush. From the age of 2, Alistair spent all his holidays and long weekends at their family home at Ingwelala in the Umbabat Game Reserve. Alistair’s passion grew very strong during these early years, and instead of going on a party holiday with all his friends after Matric, he spent his time working in the bush.  Alistair loves the Lowveld, and being a Ranger is a dream ‘job’ for him. He always goes above and beyond to share his passion with his guests to ensure they have the best safari experience possible.

542863_10151232528188150_433957214_nAndre Kruger has been a ranger at Tintswalo Safari Lodge on and off since the beginning. He started his guiding career in the early 90’s as a whitewater rafting guide and river guide on the Zambezi river in Victoria Falls. It was a natural progression for him to return to South Africa to take up a trails guiding position in the Manyeleti in 1997. Four years on foot heightened his love for the bush, and his search for new experiences took shape in the industry with Andre’s passion taking him into lodge management. He has since worked in the wilds of Botswana, Tanzania, and Zambia. He has a Zambian and South African guiding licence and holds a Master of Yachts skippers licence.

11212765_10155564033825788_9103243172832330238_nDarren Roberts-Yorke, Tintswalo Safari Lodge’s Bird Guide and Photographer, has been bird watching since he was 8 years old. His love of nature and how it all works together has always been a passion for him. Being a ranger allows Darren to indulge in this passion of his. His love for wildlife is apparent in his outstanding wildlife photography. Darren updates the Explorers Safari Diary Blog, with weekly updates of all the latest sightings on the Manyeleti Game Reserve: http://www.tintswalo.com/safari/category/rangers/

10857884_10152945390862556_8662235998571376588_nAndrew Kirton is Tintswalo Safari Lodge’s snake and insect ranger. Andrew became a ranger because he loves the lifestyle –waking up every morning, jumping into a land cruiser and setting off into the wilderness where the Big Five animals roam free. Andrew is living his dream, and loves meeting new people from all around the world, sharing his passion and knowledge of the bush.

Our Tintswalo Safari Lodge Rangers are some of the best, and most experiences Rangers in the Lowveld. Today, we celebrate them and thank them for all the hard work that they do – Manyeleti Game Reserve conservation, and ensuring their guests have the mast magical safari experience of a lifetime!

Mandela Day: Tintswalo Lodges Taking Action & Inspiring Change

Tintswalo Lodges Mandela Day Post

Nelson Mandela International Day was launched in recognition of Nelson Mandela’s  birthday on 18 July, 2009 via unanimous decision of the UN General Assembly. It was inspired by a call Nelson Mandela made a year earlier, for the next generation to take on the burden of leadership in addressing the world’s social injustices when he said that “it is in your hands now”. It is more than a celebration of Madiba’s life and legacy. It is a global movement to honour his life’s work and act to change the world for the better.

The message behind Mandela Day is simple – each individual has the ability and the responsibility to change the world for the better. If each one of us heeded the call to simply do good every day, we would be living Nelson Mandela’s legacy and helping to build a country of our dreams. The baton of leadership has been handed over to us. It is in our hands now to make a positive difference and this is what we hope to achieve at Tintswalo Lodges.

The question we must ask ourselves is what we are doing to make the world a better place; what are we doing to make every day a Mandela Day? 

Tintswalo Waterfall in Johannesburg, teamed up with Century Property Development and the Riversands Incubation Hub  to dedicate their 67 minutes to the nearby community of Diepsloot. The school, which services the nearby Diepsloot Community, was in desperate need of a face lift and so received a fresh lick of paint!

20150717_123905

20150717_123849

Tintswalo Safari Lodge spent their 67 minutes‬ on Mandela Day, in the Welverdiend Community – handing out toys, shoes and delicious cupcakes to all the children.

image1

image9

Tintswalo Atlantic decided to spend their 67 minutes on Mandela Day‬ with the most wonderful team of hard working builders who have been working on the re-build since April. The building team’s progress is astounding – come rain or shine they are always positive and smiling. Ryno invited the builders to be part of ‘Tintswalo Forever’ as each got his opportunity to plant a tree on the mountainside. The Tintswalo Chefs treated the entire team to a lunch braai and finished off with a treat of toasted marshmallows.

1

4

Mandela Day is dynamic and ever-changing: it belongs to everyone and can take place anywhere, at any time. We urge everyone to find inspiration for their contribution in the legacy of Nelson Mandela and to serve their fellow humans every day.

“What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead” – Nelson Mandela

Fireman Frank Forbay – Tintswalo Lodges real life super hero

frank3Frank Forbay was one of the brave firemen on duty during the devastating Cape Fire which destroyed most of our beloved Tintswalo Atlantic. Frank was fighting the fire at the lodge, when a gas bottle exploded, burning his face and hands.

Frank was badly burnt in the explosion at Atlantic andspent a month recovering in hospital. After being discharged, it was his wonderful wife Natasha, who nursed him back to health. It was only after the ordeal that Frank told us this story: When the explosion went off and he felt himself catch fire, his gut reaction was to jump straight into the jacuzzi! As Frank sat there, he thought to himself: “Ooooooooh, they have a Jacuzzi – this must be a really fancy place!”.

We are so incredibly grateful to Frank, and all the other Firemen who fought the fire, for putting their lives on the line to save Tintswalo Atlantic.

Frank_lowres_1

We had the pleasure and privilege of hosting Frank and Natasha Forbay for 3 nights at Tintswalo Safari Lodge.

Andre Kruger was their Guide, he ensured they had the best Safari experience. The saw the Big Five – amazing lion and leopard sightings, elephant, buffalo and a very special rhino sighting. At the lodge, they were treated to a relaxing hydro-bath lunch and complimentary massages.

In the African language of Shangaan, Tintswalo means ‘the intangible feeling of love, gratitude and peace bestowed upon someone offering you a meaningful and worthy gift’, and this is what we wish to express to Frank and Natasha. We loved having them to stay at Tintswalo Safari Lodge, and hope that they will come back again one day!

Frank_lowres_7

Frank_lowres_8

Frank_lowres_5

Parks Pakkies: Tintswalo’s very own humanitarian, gentleman & teacher

Parks Pakkies has spent  the month of June in Hout Bay. He began his work in community projects about 15 years ago. He worked with children in different townships on the subjects of ” how to study” , “moral choices”, “teenage issues”, “drugs” and other topics. Parks has been with Tintswalo for some years first completing his training in public speaking and facilitation. Parks was focused on community development programs in the Eastern Cape. He established the whole programme working with the police, schools and other community groups. He had great success in raising the standard of education at the schools he worked in as well as assisting communities with drug problems. He was then invited to lecture in a training college in the Waterberg area and delivered their workshops on professionalism, exchange values, communication and problem solving as part of a SETA approved syllabus to learners in the hospitality industry ranging from chefs, to butlers and guides.

Community Cohesion DOE Workshop (4)

Park’s mission for his visit was to spend time with #TeamTintswalo on team building and training as well as to present workshops in the community and become involved wherever possible in community upliftment. Parks is a great teacher, a humanitarian, a fine example of a professional with an exemplary work ethic and it has been such a pleasure so far to see him in action.  He has been running workshops for the Tintswalo Atlantic Team on topics under the Basic Life Skills Heading which focuses on Communication, Components of Understanding, Professionalism, Self-Respect, Self-Trust, Morale and How to make planning become an actuality.  We have also enjoyed team building days spent on the beach and hiking the beautiful mountains that surround Hout Bay.

Team Building Games on the Beach 1

Team Building Hike and Braai Day (8)

#TeamTintswalo has been reminded that: It is okay and professional to look into each other’s eyes. It is okay to participate and communicate one’s thoughts and viewpoints as they occur, especially in a manner in which another can easily receive the communication and understand you. We are all equal as human beings regardless of our position we hold in the workplace and this realisation paired with professionalism will always lead to team members moving forward and being recognised as positive members of the team.

For me, this quote by Nelson Mandela summarises these sessions we have had:

“To be free is not merely to cast off one’s chains, but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others.  We declare our right on this earth to be a man, to be a human being. To be given the rights of a human being. To be respected as a human being in this society, on this earth, in this day.”

Hiking and Braaing Team Building Day (2)

Parks’ first contact with the Community of Hout Bay was through Community Cohesion, an NGO that aims to help South Africans achieve their potential through personal development training, social worker intervention and counselling, ultimately contributing to healing the social fabric of South Africa.

Community Cohesion DOE Workshop (5)

My first contact with Bronwyn Moore from Community Cohesion was on the 10th of March, one week after the fire, through a private message which she sent me out of the blue.  She came across really warm and caring sending her well wishes to our team.  She was concerned about the well-being of our team.

Saying “Please know that if any of your staff, yourselves or anyone you know who are imagining what happened (secondary trauma) to you all when Tintswalo burnt down, are in need of trauma counselling, feel free to let me know. We operate our trauma centre from our offices in Mainstream Centre and we have 9 trained counsellors who offer this service at no charge to the community of Hout Bay.”  Although I did discuss her kind offer with Melissa, we unanimously agreed that we were all ok. With all thanks to the the Corbetts & the Goosens for the handling of the immediate days after the fire our team were inspired to keep our spirit alive and remain positive as we go through the re-opening together. Although Bronwyn’s reaching out to us was most appreciated we were all thankful that their services offered to the TIntswalo Atlantic staff was not going to be required.

It was with great pleasure that a few months later we as #TeamTintswalo could give a little back to the Hout Bay community through Community Cohesion.  After a meeting with Bronwyn she informed us that they had a community event in their offices the following day “Department of Labour employment skills development partnership” at their Hout Bay Office. The workshop was really well attended by members of the community from Hangberg as well as from Imizamo Yethu.  Parks Pakkies delivered a workshop on ‘being in the workplace and professionalism’.  A very fitting and valuable session to end the day of learning for the attendees from the community.

Community Cohesion DOE Workshop (3)

Community Cohesion DOE Workshop (1)

During this last week before the Cape School Holidays, we thought it fitting to engage some of the Grade 6 & 7 learners from the Moravian School in our Hout Bay Township of Imizamo Yethu. During the recent weeks there have been some most unfortunate incidents relating to gang violence and drugs and when we approached the Schools Vice Principal Mr. Engel to ask how we may best be of service.  He called in the Grade 6 & 7 Head of Departments and they unanimously agreed that of the 4 options for workshops Tintswalo was offering that the “Say no ways am I taking drugs” would be the most beneficial to the children at this time.

Community School Workshops (3)

We managed to get our message out to 200 children and we hope that in some way it will stay fresh in their minds.  The success stories and results of the learner’s art which they submitted after the sessions made it clear that the message was heard. Knowledge is power and our hope is that these young children with bright futures will be armed with the knowledge that could save them from falling into the clutches of substance abuse, by knowing the truth.

Community School Workshops (5)

Community School Workshops (1)

Parks Pakkies has one more day with #TeamTintswalo.  We will miss him dearly when he returns to Johannesburg for his new and exciting teaching and mentorship venture which will be undertaken at the ‘Riversands Incubation Hub’ .

The Riversands Incubation Hub  is ideally located in the first fully integrated mixed use commercial development that caters for all sizes of businesses. The Hub provides vital support and job creation to a marginalised residential node. Century Property Group, the sister company to Tintswalo, has partnered with Jobs Fund and National Treasury  in building the Hub premises and providing mentorship and support programmes to the SMEs who form part of the Riversands Incubation Hub programme. The Hub functions as an “on-site practical business university”. Support will be given in accountancy, marketing, tax, law, labour law, engineering, best practice and other vital business skills. This mentorship will ensure that when SMEs graduate from the programme they are a viable business with long-term sustainability.”

Read more about the Hub

 http://www.mediaclubsouthafrica.com/economy/3772-small-business-incubation-hub-to-help-develop-diepsloot#ixzz3dRdvtrC9

Another day, another blessing,  Tintswalo, where else in the World.

Blog Written by Tania Batista Hofer & Edited by Tracy Henley

Tintswalo Atlantic Community Project: Little Angels

First Visit to Little Angels

On Wednesday 25 March, the Tintswalo Atlantic went for their very first visit to ‘Little Angels’,  a Non-Profit community educare center for children and youth in the township of Hangberg in Cape Town, South Africa. Tintswalo Atlantic has been inspired by Liezl Mathews, who is the founder of Little Angels, which was established four years ago.

Liezl is such a beautiful example of a member of the community being pro-active in moving forward with a project that will benefit the children.  She works with all different ages and provides a wonderfully positive environment for them to be mentally stimulated and motivated whilst their parents are occupied on working on improving the families future. Today Little Angels looks after approximately 60-80 children in the crèche at any one time, with many more lining up, wanting to enroll.

Jeantelle-Exec Chef, serving Lunch to Little Angels Kiddies

Jeantelle-Exec Chef, serving Lunch to Little Angels Kiddies

The Tintswalo Atlantic Ladies were teachers for the day assisting with fun and educational activities with the 58 little kiddies between ages 2 and 4 years old. The Tintswalo Atlantic Chefs prepared lunch for all the little pre-school children. The Tintswalo Atlantic Guys assisted with cleaning and clearing up the area. The original plan was to paint their 3 Wendy Houses that they are using as their facility, but sadly Little Angels paint supply had been stolen so the painting was postponed to our next visit!

Nancy-Head House Keeper serving lunch to the Little Angels Kiddies

Nancy-Head House Keeper serving lunch to the Little Angels Kiddies

Second Visit to Little Angels

The mission for Visit 2 to Little Angels was for the Tintswalo Atlantic Butlers to get stuck into re-painting the Wendy Houses. Ephraigm and Eric took on the task of fixing the ceiling.

1b painting

Tintswalo Atlantic Butlers painting the Wendy House at Little Angels

2 Ephraigm and Eric fixing the ceiling

Ephraigm and Eric fixing the ceiling

The Tintswalo Atlantic Chefs served lunch and we also had a fun activity planned for the little ones – decorateing cupcakes!  So, with great concentration the little ones took on their new activity.

3b cupcake concentration

Cupcake Concentration

Liezl had an idea for the little ones to take their decorated cupcakes home to show their mommies. Well – have you ever told a 4 year old to look at a cupcake without eating it?! It was like telling a Lion to admire an injured Wildebeest in the bush. The cupcake decorators were subsequently given the vote those  who were for eating their cupcake now say me. The uproar of ‘meeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee’ was unanimous and a decision was passed  for the little ones to follow their natural instinct. A  unified munching of delicious cupcakes then took place.

3a cupcake thumbs up

Cupcake Thumbs Up!

Third Visit to Little Angels

The Mission:  To add a touch of colour to the fresh coat of paint that was completed on our last visit.  This time we had a smaller group together of Tintswalo Atlantic’s Artists and it was the really fun part, lovely colourful, messy,WILD, flowery fun! Thank you to Tom Kelly, a Hout Bay local for donating some of the paint. And of course thanks also to the Little Angels Youth Group who got stuck in too during their school holidays… They certainly brought the WILD flower theme to life!

3 Youth Painting

Dilemma: Three Fantastic Tintswalo Lodges Chefs and one burnt down kitchen! Yet, so many things to be thankful for. This time lunch was to be prepared for 80 people in total. The little pre-schoolers, youth group and the Tintswalo team.

6 Yummy Lunch for all

A Yummy Lunch for All

A Huge BIG thank you to the owner of Johnny from Bugattis Pizza and Pasta Restaurant in Victoria Rd for allowing ‪Tintswalo‬ Atlantic chefs to use their kitchen to make lunch.  Also a HUGE big thank you to Jorge from Casareccio Restaurant on Main Road for allowing us to use their BIG pots.

Tintswalo Atlantic chefs don’t just cook, they paint too. Chef Justine did an awesome job painting a Little Angel on the entrance building while Butler Enoch concentrating on his insects which of course no garden themed painting scene would be complete without.  Butler George painter Extrodinaire also got stuck into the flower theme.

5 Chef Justine SUPER painter

Chef Justine SUPER painter

4 Enoch Butler Painting

Enoch Butler Painting

WELL DONE team!  And of course as always another HUGE Thank you goes out to lovely Irina Mink for popping in every now and again to take all these super photos of our projects and progress. TeamTintswalo will see you soon Little Angels.

Blog post written by Tania Batista Hofer, Photographs by Irina Mink

You can read more about this amazing Non-Profit Organisation at www.littleangelsincapetown.wordpress.com

Tintswalo Atlantic Community Project: Olu’s Dream

Tania Batista Hofer, Assistant General Manager of Tintswalo Atlantic, made contact with Chloe De La Harpe from Olu’s Dream many moons ago.  Chloe is one of Hout Bay’s tireless, selfless community aware people.

IMG_92231

If you have ever been to Hout Bay you will discover it is truly a valley reflective of our rainbow nation.  With the coloured community who mainly live in the historical fishing village and the majority of the African Community live in Mandela Park (Imizamo Yethu).

IMG_93491

The rest of the valley is a mix of beautiful farms in the lower valley and as you move higher and higher up the slopes of the valley you will find beautiful homes and mansions.  There is a huge number of ‘have’s’ in the community who truly embrace the struggling or ‘have nots’. This is what makes Hout Bay so special and show that we can implement small positive changes.

IMG_3095Chloe is also a teacher at Olu’s Dream, which provides illiterate primary school children with private, personalised English reading and writing lessons. Their Literacy Teacher sees 2 children every 45 minutes, 5 days per week, to personally guide them through the phonics programme and ensure there is progress and understanding. Their aim is to enable the children to read and write English at a basic level after 6 months. Originally when Tania made contact with Chloe, she was collecting through a project called ‘Hout Bay Drop off Day’, which is a community Face Book Page: https://www.facebook.com/houtbaydropoffday?fref=ts.

Through her project, the Tintswalo Atlantic team donated some lightly used items from Tintswalo Atlantic’s House Keeping department.  When Chloe heard about Tintswalo burning down she was the first person to make contact with Tania.  She was concerned about the staff and whether the members of the team who live in Mandela Park, would still have their jobs.  She offered that if necessary, she would start a collection project through her ‘Hout Bay Drop of Day’ programme to help. When we were assured that nobody would lose their jobs, Tania let Chloe know.  We all found it so touching that she thought of us at Atlantic, only moments after the news went out about the fire. We decided, as a team, to go and support Chloe at Olu’s Dream.

IMG_0855

IMG_0846

A group of 16 Tintswalo Atlantic Team members went along to the classroom at Olu’s Dream and joined in, assisting with one on one reading and literacy games.  It was so touching to see the Tintswalo Team engaging with the children and being fine examples of mature adults that the children hope to become one day. Everyone was having so much fun in the classroom. After the class was over all of the children and Tintswalo Team went down to the beach and enjoyed a lovely afternoon playing soccer, swimming in the chilly Atlantic and a light lunch afterwards to warm everyone up.

IMG_0868

Olu

We were so honoured to also meet Olu, who is a bright young lady with so much character and grace. We really hope to do it again!  We would also like to appeal to anyone who may have literacy games relevant to Children ages 7-13 if they would like to donate them to contact us so we can arrange a collection point.  Likewise children’s books would also be very much appreciated by the organisation.

Please read more about Olu’s dream on their website: http://en.olusdream.org

Blog post written by Tania Batista Hofer, edited by Emily Booth.

Family Time at Tintswalo Manor House

Family is important to us all – we treasure our families and appreciate the time we get to spend together. At Tintswalo, we have a special place for families to come and enjoy the bush together – Tintswalo Manor House.

tintswalo-manor-house

The magnificent Tintswalo Manor House is situated 5kms from Tintswalo Safari Lodge in the Manyeleti Game Reserve. The Manor House provides ideal shared ‘holiday home’ style accommodation for up to 10 guests – and we have a wonderful children’s programme which caters for all ages.

tintswalo-imagine Imagine a place where toothbrushes are found in the wild, snails’ shells are as big as teacups, where the patterns in the sand tell amazing stories, where you find small garbage collectors, where birds guide you to stores of honey, where the skies tell its own legends and where you experience a new different culture…

The aim of the Tintswalo Children’s Programme is to provide young visitors with a fun, educational perspective of the African bush, thus enriching their safari experience with us.

On arrival, children will be introduced to their Field Guide or Children’s coordinator. They will be informed about the activities and each child will receive a Tintswalo Backpack with pen, pencil, binoculars, water bottle and Activity Workbook for them to take home.

Each day’s events will be divided into themes concentrating on different aspects of the Bush. Each theme consists of a talk, game drive and an activity. The themes below are a guideline of what can be offered, and the programme is flexible to suite individual booking requirements. On each game drive snacks and drinks are also provided. Special children’s menus are also offered at the Lodge. Game drives and walking activities will be conducted in accordance with Tintswalo safari policies with particular emphasis on safety procedures.

A Typical 5 day Experience for children at Tintswalo Manor House:

tintswalo-tshirt-paintingDAY 1 THEME: SOUTH AFRICA AND SHANGAAN CULTURE

This theme concentrates on our country. The Field Guide will provide information on the area Tintswalo is in, its people, our flag and other relevant details.

Talk and Game Drive: This first game drive is used to introduce the safety guidelines, and also an Introduction to the Bushveld.

Activity: Shirt painting with fabric paint. Older kids will paint the South African Flag on T-shirts. Younger ones can use the flags’ colours to paint anything on their T-shirts.

DAY 2 THEME: BUSH SUPERMARKET AND RESTAURANT

This theme concentrates on what humans can survive on in the bush and what animals eat.

Talk and Game Drive: The focus is on trees, shrubs, grasses, animal droppings, etc.

Activity: Younger children can collect plant items on the drive that can be used as substitutes for, amongst other things, toothbrushes, toilet paper and cups. Older children can also partake in collage making. They can collect different leaves, grasses, etc, paste them on a piece of cardboard and undertake an identification exercise; the completed collages can be used at their school for show and tell. Little ones can make leaf prints with paint.

tinstwalo-kids-programme

DAY 3 & 4 THEME: TRACKING

This theme can run over two days. It concentrates on teaching children the different spoor (tracks) of animals and also tracking techniques. Professional trackers assist with this task. Children can be taught how to follow animals and look for distinguishing signs.

Game Drive: Very important for children to go out and experience real tracking in the bush.

tintswalo-kidsActivity: Plaster of Paris footprint moulds can be made, which can then be painted. Little ones can use play dough.

If the children want to do additional activities, alternatives such as a Treasure Hunt can be arranged. In this kind of activity children can use their new techniques to find a ‘Treasure’. The Treasure Hunt is arranged in a safe area as designated by the field guide. The guide will “make” spoor for children to follow in conjunction with various clues that will lead them to the treasure, which they can keep. This can also be an indoor activity.

NIGHT 3 or 4 THEME: STAR GAZING

This theme concentrates on our solar system, as well as showing children prominent stars in our spectacular southern hemisphere skies.

Activity: Painting of the planets and stars can be done using black paper, glitter, white paint, etc for good effect. “Mooncatchers” can be made with fishing lines, beads and also with selective natural options such as feathers and seed pods.

DAY 5 THEME: INSECTS AND BIRDS

This theme concentrates on our feathered friends and small creatures. The Small 5 can be sought out.

Game Drive: Go out to find our Small 5, as well as other smaller creatures such as butterflies, lizards, frogs, etc. Birds can also be identified; the field guide will explain how to do this from various visual aspects as well as from bird calls.

Activity: Mosaic pictures of little creatures can be made.

Every day can is ended with an authentic Shangaan Story – told by the Field Guide or one of the Shangaan Staff Members.

tintswalo-family2

We hope all our followers, guests, family and friends are having a wonderful Easter Sunday and Family Day tomorrow, 6 April 2015. After all, Family is the most important thing in the world.

With Love, Tintswalo Lodges

Photographs by Hamish Niven, Fritz Breytenbach and Alistair Leuner.