Corporate Social Responsibility
At Chobe Holdings Limited (“Chobe”) we believe in creating shared value through our integrated approach of investing in wildlife, investing in people and investing in Botswana. We do this by developing meaningful and longstanding relationships with communities, organisations and programmes in line with the values of Botswana’s Vision 2036. Geographically the primary areas we support are those areas in which Chobe operates, North West, Chobe and Central Districts, although Chobe also support national causes.
Funding for Corporate Social Responsibility programmes is dispersed from group treasury, but is accounted for at subsidiary level.
Investment in Wildlife
Desert & Delta Safaris (Leroo La Tau) continues to participate in the national rhino relocation program through the provision of funds for darting and monitoring rhino movements in the Makgadikgadi Pans National Park. Further contributions have been made to Rhino Conservation Botswana by Ker & Downey Botswana (Dinaka).
The Peter Smith University of Botswana (PSUB) Herbarium Project has benefited from further funding by Desert & Delta Safaris (Xugana Island Lodge). This project aims to create a digital database to provide easy access to facts that will allow further investigation of the botanical history of Northern Botswana and is supported by the UNDP Sustainable Land Management Program in partnership with the University of Botswana.
On the Chobe River, Chobe Game Lodge have launched and manned a high-tech patrol boat. It is envisaged that this boat will provide a mechanism for the Botswana Defence Force and Department of Wildlife and National Parks to conduct joint patrols as a response to the government’s call to build public/private relationships.
Chobe leads the way in social and environmental responsibility in Botswana with Chobe Game Lodge among the first properties to be awarded the highest Ecotourism level in the country by the Botswana Tourism Organisation, in recognition for the lodge’s ongoing commitment to social and environmental responsibility. Some pioneer work led to the launch of the first electric-powered safaris in Botswana and developing the most advanced technology for electric-powered boats and vehicles in the African tourism industry. The lodge makes increased use of solar power with 313 solar panels installed, supplying approximately twenty percent of the lodge’s daily power requirement, the remainder is supplied by Livingstone’s hydroelectric plant at Victoria Falls.
Recognition for Chobe Game Lodge’s pioneering work came in November 2017 with the lodge winning the Responsible Tourism Award for Best Carbon Reduction at the World Travel Market for the lodge’s work in reducing carbon emissions through its fleet of electric vehicles and boats.
Chobe’s camps and lodges operate to the highest ecological standards and Chobe continues invest in protecting the environment in which we are privileged to operate.
Investment in People
By investing in people, both staff and communities, we have developed an innovative and integrated corporate social responsibility programme which is coupled to community development initiatives, where possible in support of government programmes.
Embracing the Ministry of Education’s ‘adopt-a-school’ programme Chobe Game Lodge adopted Liswaani I Junior Secondary School the Chobe Enclave’s Kachikau Village. The school’s 370 pupils are drawn from the surrounding villages of Mabele, Kavimba, Kachikau, Satau and Parakarungu. Chobe’s sponsorship provides materials required for the teaching of mathematics and science as well as prizes for high achievers in these subjects.
Ten flat screen televisions were donated to the Ministry of Education by Chobe Game Lodge for distribution to schools in the Chobe District to promote English literacy.
Chobe Game Lodge makes both a monthly donation to the Children’s Ark Orphanage and facilitates the lodge’s staff visits on Wednesdays to help the children with their school work, clean the centre and entertain the children. The lodge also provides support to orphanage events, graduations, anniversaries and Christmas parties as well as providing educational material.
Bana Ba Letsatsi supports approximately 100 vulnerable and orphaned children in Maun. Ker & Downey Botswana is Bana Ba Letastsi’s major donor, making monthly contributions. Over and above the financial contribution Ker & Downey Botswana provides opportunities for children to experience the otherwise inaccessible wilderness on their doorstep. In partnership with the pack for a purpose programme Ker & Downey Botswana also encourages guests to contribute essential targeted supplies.
Chobe Game Lodge continued to support Chobe River College by entering two teams in their annual Chobe Challenge fundraiser.
A long-standing relationship with the Botswana National Youth Council provides young people with training and work experience within the hospitality industry. Since 2006 Chobe Game Lodge has trained 196 young people employing 54 in a variety of roles within the food and beverage department. Having been trained within a five-star environment, many have gone on to have successful careers within the district’s wider hospitality sector.
Encouraging and promoting literacy, Chobe Game Lodge made a monetary donation was made to Dulcere Botswana to assist with the production of home language African story books. A contribution of beverages and educational material was also made to Library Week.
Desert & Delta Safaris continues to sponsor, on a full bursary basis, two students studying International Hospitality Management degree courses offered by the Botswana Accountancy College. Extending the project, a third student will be sponsored from 2018. On graduation these students are guaranteed employment opportunities at Desert & Delta Safaris as Trainee Managers for two years.
Chobe’s, and particularly Desert & Delta Safaris’, links with Tshodilo Junior Secondary School have continued to strengthen through the provision of uniforms, stationery and bags. Students were treated to a weekend getaway at Leroo La Tau Lodge to experience the reality of tourism and conservation at the same level as full paying customers.
Located near Desert & Delta Safaris’ Leroo La Tau, Khumaga Primary School have a close relationship with the lodge. Financial assistance was provided to the school to assist in various areas such as trophies to students that achieved a pass mark of over 75%, career fair and provision of PSLE revision books. Other projects included engagement with the school’s traditional dance group, the provision of graduation gowns for the preschool and support towards the building of a traditional hut..
Tsodilo Junior School has also been adopted and Desert & Delta Safaris supported the school’s career fair for Forms 1 and 2.
The innovative Turning Heads (Changing Lives) Beauty Salon supports ten vulnerable women from Kazungula. Chobe Game Lodge has committed to funding the salon’s rent as well as encouraging lodge staff’s use of the salon by subsidising their beauty treatments.
Chobe Game Lodge continues to support a wide range of other initiatives including making donations to the Tebelopele couple HIV and AIDS testing campaign, the Chobe Arts Association and other local organisations.
Encouraging social cohesion and physical health Chobe Game Lodge remains Chobe United’s primary sponsor contributing to the club’s regular monthly expenses. Club memorabilia is available for sale in the lodge’s curio shop. In the North West District the Premier League’s Sankoyo Bush Bucks received a monetary donation from Desert & Delta Safaris.
Supporting the Presidential Housing Appeal, Chobe Game Lodge built and electrified a house.
Ker & Downey Botswana continue to support the Golden Years Group through a financial contribution to monthly health checks.
Our responsibility to our people is reflected by our investment in staff training and career development. This investment in people has ensured that the majority of management roles within the group have been successfully localised.
Investment in Botswana
As a contribution to the encouragement of national cohesion a monetary donation is made to the Independence Day celebrations by Chobe Game Lodge in Kasane, Plateau, Kazungula and Lesoma. Further donations were made to the 16 June African Child Commemorations. An annual competition, held prior to Independence Day, by the Khumaga community is supported with prizes provided by Leroo La Tau.
Listed on the Botswana Stock Exchange, Chobe encourages broad-based participation in both Botswana’s tourism and financial markets. We are dedicated to our corporate citizenship activities, responsible business practices and shared value proposition. We are committed to ensuring that all revenues are remitted to and income taxed in Botswana.