Khoadi-Hôas Makes Mark in Tourism

The Khoadi-Hocircas in the Kunene Region is one the most successful conservancy in Namibia and is currently financially self-sustaining.

The conservancy proved to be best as it covers its own running costs, has its own fleet of vehicles and it owns a community lodge and campsite.

Speaking to New Era in an interview, Hilga Lisa Gawises who is the manager of the conservancy explained how they became successful while other communal wildlife conservancies in Namibia are struggling to survive financial and ultimately fail to benefit the surrounding communities.

“Yes, it is one of the successful and well managed conservancy, because the conservancy CMC is adhering the conservancy constitution, and are always searching and listening to the aice given by MET and supporting NGO’s.

The management and the staff try to fulfil their duties outlined in the constitution, Conservancy Management plan and implementing the policies developed and approved by members,” explained Gawises. She explained that trophy hunting, lodge developments, game for shooting and sale, live game sales, game for own use and other game utilisation activities remains some of their main source of income for the successful conservancy.

The conservancy was established in 1997 after legislation was passed through the Ministry of Environment and Tourism (MET) and was gazetted in 1998.

Some of the achievement include the signing of an agreement with a professional hunter at the beginning of 2000 and the construction of Grootberg Lodge with the aid of the European Union that provided N$4.5million.

The Grootberg Lodge was officially opened in 2005.

The conservancy through the Game Product Trust Fund (GPTF) availed funds to build elephant water points as a mitigation measure towards Human Wildlife Conflict (HWC) and it also helped construct Hoada campsite expected to be opened by early next year.

According to her, the conservancy also has projects aimed at youth empowerment, women’s desk empowerment and also the Grootberg Farmers Integrated Livestock Improvement Scheme (GFILIS). They also have a soup kitchen meant for the elderly and vulnerable people.

Other success stories include supporting soccer and netball teams around the conservancy and are also funding a students pursuing tourism studies at the Polytechnic of Namibia (PoN).

Further, they also addressed the needs of Kindergardens in the area and have employed majority of its workforce at the lodge campsite and the conservancy within the community. Some of the plans for the conservancy which are in the pipe line include the appointment of management partner at Hobatare and the recruitment of staff.

Recently, MET approved the areas of Lusese and Nakabolelwa along the Zambezi and Chobe rivers be turned into conservancies, bringing to 81 the number of registered conservancies across the country.

Source : New Era