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Top Regional Awards for Karoo National Park

07 September 2017

Karoo National Park (KrNP) seems to have been the Park to beat at this year’s SANParks Frontier Region Achievement Awards – having walked away with one individual and three team awards at last week’s event in Wilderness.  The awards evening takes place annually and gives recognition to individuals, teams and parks for outstanding work in the previous financial year – in this case 2016/17.  The Frontier Region is made up of the Addo Elephant, Camdeboo, Garden Route, Karoo and Mountain Zebra National Parks.

The individual award this year went to General Worker, Damon Frieslaar.  Damon was nominated for the award by three of his colleagues – the first time this has ever happened in the Region.  In nominating him, they said “Damon is an extremely active and hardworking employee in KrNP.  He leads by example and is always on the lookout for extra work – not only in his own field, but throughout the Park. Damon is known for coming up with workable solutions to challenges and for completing tasks within the minimal amount of time.  He uses his initiative and always looks for new and improved ways of doing things.”  This was the second time Damon has received recognition in this award category in the past five years.

Staff also brought back some of the more prestigious team awards.  The Park’s Technical Department were recognised for each one of the team members being an expert in his own right and always performing to the best of their ability.  They work well together, are always cheerful and encourage one another and the rest of their colleagues to strive for better through their tremendous work ethic.  Most remarkable is the short turnaround time in which technical queries and faults are attended to.  

The front office staff got recognition in the Best Performing Reception category.  This group of men and women make up a highly committed team who perform their day-to-day duties to the best of their ability and who cope well under pressure. Their problem-solving skills are exceptional, they are able to work independently and in a responsible manner at all times.  Their contribution to the Park’s Tourism Department is commendable, ensuring the highest standards of customer service are always met.  They won the same award two years ago.

Finally, the top award of the night, Best Performing Park, also went to Karoo National Park.  SANParks’ vision of connecting to society is fulfilled here by the way the Park links up with the communities on its borders.  Not only is there a good working relationship with its neigbours, but between staff members as well, leading to minimal staff turnover.  There is a culture of responsibility and politeness towards visitors – with staff committed to upholding the highest international standards to ensure that guests’ expectations are exceeded.

Hospitality Services Manager – Brian van der Westhuizen, Technical Department’s Dewald Duimpies, Receptionist – Lorrian Bosch, Senior Housekeeper – Sorina van der Walt, Tourism Department’s Elizabeth Frieslaar, General Worker – Damon Frieslaar and Park Manager – Nico van der Walt.

Issued by:
South African National Parks (SANParks) Frontier Region Communications

Fayroush Ludick
Regional Manager: Communications, SANParks 
Tel:  082 888 0201 or 012 426 5371

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