Recently we have shared with you the heartwarming effect Londolozi has had on its staff as well as its guests through #TheLondoloziEffect. It has been such a rewarding journey gathering snippets from different individuals from around the world. Now we wanted to explore the Londolozi Effect from a sustainability point of view – and celebrate how it has rippled out into the world. We have come to realise that it’s the small changes we make at Londolozi that have the power to make change and sometimes inspire others. It’s the changing of mindsets after time in nature; the sharing of best practices with fellow partners in the hospitality industry; the implementation of new systems for living and the constant learning and unlearning – all of which create a profound impact on the earth, the people and the wildlife surrounding Londolozi.
“Never underestimate the power of a small group of committed people to change the world. In fact, it is the only thing that ever has.” ~ Margaret Mead
Here are 5 ways in which the small “Londolozi Effects” are rippling out into the world in the realms of sustainability:
1. We Were Recognised For The Relais & Châteaux Sustainability Trophy
Londolozi is honoured and humbled to have recently won the 2022 Relais & Châteaux sustainability trophy out of 579 properties around the globe.
“Relais and Châteaux and Champagne Duval-Leroy award the sustainability trophy to Christopher Goodman and his team. Each with a degree in permaculture, they put their passions to work in furthering a ‘Conservation Development Model’ for Londolozi Game Reserve in South Africa. Collectively they oversee a Futuristic African Village, with 39 vegetable gardens, a solar farm, a cutting-edge water treatment plant and a host of new systems for living in sympathy with the planet. They truly embody a modern approach to environmental responsibility.” ~ Relais & Châteaux
What is even more exciting is that for the first time, Relais & Châteaux showcased more than the luxury side of the brand by letting the world better understand the incredible sustainability work being done by each of its members. Relais described themselves as; “More than a brand, Relais & Châteaux represents a profound philosophy: to create a better world through cuisine and hospitality.”
“At Londolozi, our aim is to pioneer new systems for living in partnership with nature. One of our strongest focuses is water preservation, so we invested in a wastewater recycling treatment plant. It is one of the most advanced systems in the southern hemisphere and ensures that the disposal of our treated wastewater into the wilderness is done with the greatest of care.”~ Shan Varty
2. We Are Always Challenging Ourselves When It Comes To Sustainability
As with most sustainability journeys, ours has come with many trials, strengths, weaknesses and lessons and we have found that the best way to make sure we grow from these is to document the process. In 2022 through the incredible leadership and guidance of Lars Seifert (Chief Communications and Sustainability Officer for Relais & Châteaux), the launch of Relais & Châteaux’s first Impact Report was released – recording and beginning to encourage each of the properties affiliated to create and work on their impact goals. Setting goals as a collective, Relais & Châteaux currently umbrellas 580 properties – imagine the ripple effect being created as each of these properties put sustainability at the forefront of their businesses. It is incredible to witness as all these stand-alone family-owned businesses begin to align themselves with the global SDGs.
It’s the little drops of water, like these stand-alone family-owned businesses, that make up the ocean with the power to impact our planet.
The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) were adopted by the United Nations in 2015 as a universal call to action to end poverty and protect the planet, which was agreed to by world leaders in a bid to build an environmentally sustainable, fairer, better world by 2030. Aligning with the UN’s SDGs is of critical importance to us at Londolozi, some of which are reflected in our own Impact Report (second edition) which we are so happy to share with all of you – enjoy!
“Our association is dedicated to preserving the beauty and contrasts of local communities, cultures and ecosystems everywhere. While sustainability has always been intrinsic to these goals, it now moves to the forefront of how we define and measure ourselves.” ~ Relais & Châteaux
3. When It Comes To Sustainability, We Must Be Looking For Solutions And Be Willing To Challenge Old Technology
INEOS Automotive chose Londolozi as the place to launch the brand-new INEOS Grenadiers in 2022! What an honour it was to host such a forward-thinking team, who share our vision in making technology more sustainable for our planet. As part of this incredible experience, Londolozi had the opportunity to see the unveiling of the first-ever Grenadier Safari concept vehicle. As we saw this vehicle move effortlessly across the Londolozi landscape – with the knowledge that future iterations may very well be propelled by INEOS Hydrogen technology. What has always been at the forefront of our minds is the intention to migrate our entire fleet of game-drive vehicles to a sustainable safari vehicle option by the year 2026, our 100th birthday. Since 2006, we have been searching for answers that have a sustainable solution, with our intention over the years being to explore any and all possibilities with many successes and failures along this journey.
4. To Find Out More On Our Londolozi Effect On Sustainability – We Invite You To Explore Our Live Impact Website
Some of you may not have known this, but for the past three years, we have had an Impact Website where we keep all our sustainability resources, updates, history, as well as an up-to-date blog. Being on safari at Londolozi has, for many years, intentionally become much more than an exclusive luxury wilderness and wildlife viewing experience. As we continue to evolve and reimagine our guests’ engagement with nature, we have created time in the day for quieted self, inner peace and stillness in nature. Beyond these immersions and the high-action thrill of viewing Africa’s wildlife at close quarters, lies a vibrant, neighbouring human ecosystem of potential. Community upliftment, rural education, healthcare and the creation of safe havens for iconic species and other wildlife to roam freely, are just some of the ways in which your safari is already having a “ripple effect” in the neighbouring villages and families that live in and around Londolozi.
As a family business, we understand the power and importance of micro-funding before large-scale businesses thrive. For decades, we have established personal, interconnected relationships with the fabric of the people on the ground that live near Londolozi. Ours are small, yet meaningful stories that acknowledge individuals doing amazing work, where micro-funding creates macro impact. The Ripple Fund provides seed capital to empower small businesses, individual entrepreneurs, NGO start-ups, and projects that might normally go unnoticed, flourish with the right level of support. Read our most recent Ripple Fund update here, to see the steady progress we are making with small business owners.
Stay in the Ripple: To stay connected, visit the Londolozi Ripple Fund Impact site where you can follow regular updates on projects and donations as they unfold and follow work that has already been successfully completed. If you would like to receive the Londolozi Ripple Fund Impact newsletter, please let us know by sending us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
“Londolozi represents the dream of a planet abounding in open spaces, where wild animals and people live together in dignity and harmony.” ~ Relais & Châteaux
5. A Reminder Of Londolozi’s Philosophy
The Londolozi family is a collection of people who are passionate about the safari experience. We have families within our family, and generations of wisdom shared upon this sacred land under the African sky. Drawn from a diverse ancestral tapestry, these different family groups are united by their commitment to Londolozi, protector of all living things. These family members, some of whom are third-generation Londolozi families, work in close proximity with one another, building a lifelong bond with colleagues and guests alike. We are the Londolozi Family and we know that the most valuable things in this world cannot be bought, they have to be lived. That’s what we do. For nearly 100 years, we have been a small stand-alone family-owned and run business – and that will always be true.
“The Londolozi staff village remains a model for what’s possible in the world. It represents a clear intention – to be a space where love, tolerance and harmony may exist among a diverse group of humans. It is this collective energy that powers the Londolozi enterprise. Not it’s leopards or it’s bathrooms. Its humanity is what sets it apart. It’s not perfect, but there exists a clear and deliberate commitment to become a fully inclusive and vibrant South African community of the future. Where everyone feels like they belong. Where everyone can express themselves freely. Where there is a subtle yet active celebration of each others’ differences. It’s these intangibles that mean Londolozi’s repeat guests make up 40% of their visitors on any given day. And why the place runs at over 90% occupancy. For 28 years this village has raised, guided and supported me. It’s helped me to understand what it means to be South African – a gift that keeps on giving.” ~ Alex Van Den Heever
It’s so wonderful to see the changes we have made at Londolozi ripple out and inspire other organisations and people to do their part. We have by no means reached the end, and are aware that there are many more mistakes to be made, more victories to celebrate and more challenges to address.
We are so excited to share our sustainability effect with you and hope that, in some small way, you can be a part of the change no matter where you find yourself in the world. Don’t forget to email us at email@example.com if you would like to know more about the Ripple Fund or other sustainability efforts happening at Londolozi.
“True to its name, Londolozi has become a place that kindles the aspiration for a better collective future for all.” ~ Relais & Châteaux