The year was 2004 and a handful of well-traveled people sat around a table in the heart of the Zimbabwean wilderness. With backgrounds in tourism, development and conservation, they knew they wanted to do something great. They wanted to use their passion and skills to start a travel company that made a difference. They wanted to introduce people to the Africa they knew. The people. The wildlife. The magic.
When we opened our doors to our first batch of international volunteers, we were a small, family-run organization with big dreams.
It didn’t take long to see that there were a lot more people like us. People who wanted to travel while truly experiencing a country at its best, and worst. People who wanted to genuinely connect with the local people and to leave a place better than they found it. We grew and opened new volunteer projects in new countries across southern Africa.
We eventually set up home in the most beautiful city in the world, Cape Town. As the industry grew we recognized that doing the right thing, being responsible, doing good, and still providing travel experiences was, at times, complicated. We grappled with what we were… a travel company? A tourism company? How was the volunteer experience related to the impact they made? The industry was evolving, and so were we.