Karoo National Park scoops SANParks regional awards
Karoo National Park won the accolade for Reception of the Year for the excellent and friendly service delivered by reception staff. This dedicated and professional service ensured an increase in length of visitor stay and game drive revenue. Positive feedback in the Park’s visitors’ book and increased revenue from visitors was cited as testament to this outstanding performance.
The Gate of the Year Award went to Karoo National Park for the positive impression the gate guards make on all visitors to the Park. Their friendliness and professionalism has been noted to create a welcoming face for the Park, contributing to return visits and increased visitor numbers.
Staff members Elsie Pienaar was also honoured, with a merit award for Outstanding Customer Service in the Tourism department of Karoo National Park.
For the third year in a row, Mountain Zebra National Park, situated near Cradock, took the honours for both Best Performing Park and Best Performing Camp.
Mountain Zebra National Park earned scooped the Best Performing Park Award for achieving exceptionally well in terms of the three core business areas of SANParks: Conservation, People & Conservation and Tourism, as well as obtaining excellent financial results.
Conservation highlights include the introduction of brown hyena and the 38% increase (actual versus planned) in hectares of alien invasive plants targeted by the Working for Water Programme. People and Conservation department managed an increase of 9.7% in learners participating in environmental education programmes. In terms of Tourism, there was a 132% increase in game drive seats sold and an 11% increase in camping occupancy when comparing the 2009/10 financial year to the previous year.
Section Ranger of the Year went to Camdeboo National Park’s Johannes Jaantjies for his commitment to Park development. Wilson Nxamleko of Addo Elephant National Park was awarded Field Ranger of the Year for using his experience and capabilities to lead his team, even in times of crisis.
Regional Manager, Lucius Moolman, focussed on the highlights of the Frontier Region’s performance as well as remembering the losses of valued staff members in tragic accidents and deaths over the past year.
The sublime sounds of Graaff-Reinet’s La Petit Jazz Band welcomed guest and kept them entertained. After a delicious spitbraai buffet, guests took to the dance floor to show off their moves late into the night.
South African National Parks
Megan Taplin: Regional Communications Manager, Addo Elephant, Camdeboo, Karoo, Mountain Zebra National Parks, tel: 083 650 8649 or 042 2338609