Zimbabwe Parks outreach.

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ROBERT
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Thu Jan 05, 2012 12:49 pm

I have just returned from a wonderful trip through zim. (vic falls, Chizarira lodge, MAtusadona, Chirundu (fishing for tigers), mana pools and lake kyle).
the people on duty in the parks try really hard, but there are so few visitors there that revenue is minute, also it doesnt go back into conservation. some of the park employees cant remember when they were last paid, however they are at there posts and very helpful.
the facilties however are in urgent need of attention. (basics such as mozzie screen on windowes and doors, tap washers, paint. )also they need other help see below the email from Dick Pitman who runs Zim4x4 tours. my thoughts would be to put together a work trip or two to some of the least visited parks, as well as maybe starting a fund from which needed anti-poaching equipment can be bought and then donated. please let me know, give inputs etc, I havent started anything like this before, but the zim parks and zimparks staff really left aan impression on me and as a community who enjoys visiting our neighbours and touring I think the least we can do is try to give a little back.


quote from correspondence with Dick Pitman of Zim4x4

his mail is info@zim4x4.co.zw
for anyone interested in contacting him
"As regards outreach and the Hilux Club - all offers of assistance are very welcome. We do already have an arrangement with the Land Cruiser Club, but it has gone a bit quiet lately, for whatever reason. As regards the nature of such assistance: I always feel that issues such as (eg) building maintenance are capable of being - and should be - undertaken by Zimbabweans, who tend to be quick to complain but rather slower in actually doing anything. But the necessary items are freely available here.

However, other things are more easily obtained (and often much cheaper) in South Africa, and these tend to be on the field operations side of things. There is, for instance, a perennial shortage of handheld radio batteries (and often of radios themselves). GPSs are extremely useful for anti-poaching and other ops, but choice and availability are limited in Zim. Vehicle spares &c are a perennial need, and a whole other story!

Other things that come to mind, however, are (eg) 'road improvement' expeditions, for little-used but fundamentally useful tracks (we did an exercise of this kind with the local 4x4 Club last year, on Mana's Middle Jesse Road). The trick here is to choose something basically 'do-able' by an enthusiastic group in a reasonable time-frame.

Really though it's a question of what the Hilux Club - and you - feel you'd really prefer to do. There's plenty of opportunity, in all the Parks in our operating area, so do please discuss it with them and let's develop the idea. "
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Thunder02
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Thu Jan 05, 2012 2:59 pm

Hi Robert,i think this is a sensitive subject,you will get a lot of different ideas around this.I hope you get something started :thumbup:
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ROBERT
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Thu Jan 05, 2012 3:27 pm

Thanks Niel,

I hope to try make a difference. lots of people made comments in the visitors books that they would never return to these absolutely wonderful parks as a result of the run down state of things.
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Thu Jan 05, 2012 5:27 pm

Robert, the other Robert is the problem, filling his pocket......

Anyway good suggestion, but seems not only in Zim, but ZA also........ :thumbdown:

One can try and assist where possible, but not always in everyone's reach!

We recently passed through Molopo Park in NW and were horrified at the condition of the unhygenic abutions. So much so that they were unusable......

The Parks board on duty was fast asleep, obviously to busy to attend the issues......
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Thu Jan 05, 2012 9:59 pm

Robert, we can probably help with the radios and batteries. I need to know what radios they are using, including the frequencies they operate on. Not a donation, but I will make these as cost-effective as possible. Not sure about the legalities of getting them there though, but might still be cheaper than buying same in Zim.


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ROBERT
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Fri Jan 06, 2012 8:20 am

Hi Eric,

I will contact Dick Pitman and find out exactly what radios etc, then maybe we can get donations from members to pay for the radios.
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ROBERT
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Fri Jan 06, 2012 8:22 am

the autocorrect function is wrong on this page it changes D I C K to william and not Richard
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Fri Jan 06, 2012 8:49 am

ROBERT wrote:the autocorrect function is wrong on this page it changes D I C K to william and not Richard
Phixed! :)


-F_D
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ROBERT
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Fri Jan 06, 2012 9:54 am

phanks
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Tue Jan 31, 2012 5:23 pm

Hi Robert,

I have been to Mana Pools to assit with the game count twice now and I must admit, we as South Africans pay a premium to assist. Voel so biki raak gery, as ek moet meer betaal om deel te wees van die game count, meantime, back at the ranch, folk coming from as close as Kariba, pays a lot less. Anyway, it is a good experience to do the game count and worth the money, as but for any discount expected when assisting from far as our sunny SA - forget it, you will pay more .....

HJ
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ChrisF
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Tue Jan 31, 2012 6:33 pm

Robert it is one of the places on my bucket list.


BUT, each time I read of the road blocks and how some young "cops" ransack visitors vehicles then Zim just keeps moving down my list .... :(

BUT, then I must add that we even had a Namibian border patrol officer at Sendelings drif "try his luck" with us two weeks back. When I politely asked that we go to the office where he can write me a receipt for the money he wanted he waived us off ..... by the sounds of some of the stories things dont always go that smoothly in Zim .....



Now I DONT know to what extent these stories are blown out of proportion !! but sadly it does create a certain impression.
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Tue Jan 31, 2012 8:21 pm

Ja wel no fine......

On the one hand all sounds great and adventurous BUT if we want Zim really want to go forward in life we(including the whole of the earth) must stop with handouts.

I see Mark mentioned the Ablutions. True, someone must do it BUT the problem we create when we run off to fix it now is that next time they know they just have to wait long enough then someone will come and fix it....

It called the "As ek lank genoeg wag, doen iemand anders dit" mentality
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