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17 January 2024

iSimangaliso GEF-7 Presented Homestays Designs to KwaDapha Beneficiaries

iSimangaliso GEF-7 took an initiative to visit homestays that iSimangaliso is in process of rehabilitating for the benefit of the community of KwaDapha. The GEF-7 team together with iSimangaliso social facilitator and infrastructure designers are visiting these homestays beneficiaries with a purpose of presenting outcomes of the scoping exercise that was done a few months ago. Amongst the things presented are various designs of homestays that beneficiaries can choose from as the GEF-7 project is in the process of rehabilitating homestays.

This comes after the GEF-7 team conducted a scoping exercise to all proposed projects sites where the GEF-7 will be implementing its projects. These projects will benefit communities living in and adjacent to the Park in various ways, including developing Biodiversity economy, creating business and job opportunities, and developing the communities. The GEF-7 team visited kwaDapha to meet with the community and view the state of the homestays that will be rehabilitated by iSimangaliso through the GEF-7. The team also visited Madlangula Boating Concessions with a purpose of viewing the state of the boats that are owned by the community and how they operate. These beneficiaries were trained and received their boating permits through the SMME’s programme of iSimangaliso Wetland Park. The GEF-7 project will also assist them by building a boat harbour where they will receive their passengers.

The reaction of the homestays beneficiaries was positive. During the meeting, Mr Ngubane who is one of homestays beneficiaries expressed his appreciation about the progress done thus far. “I appreciate the way iSimangaliso and the GEF-7 is involving us as community members in projects that will benefit and develop rural communities such as KwaDapha. This gives us hope that by the next summer season, we will be accommodating our guests in style”, said Mr Ngubane. Through these homestays, iSimangaliso is trying to develop KwaDapha area as community members will reap various employment opportunities as part of running these infrastructure projects.