Zimbabwe: How Zim’s Tour Guides Are Breaking Gender Barriers

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Ennie Katupu is a 23-12 months-old qualified guideline in Kariba Urban, and has devoted her time and existence to saving wildlife and wildlands alongside the Zambezi River.

“When we talk of guiding, it’s like studying the surroundings and mother nature, and it is really also plugged to tourism,” she reported. “I move around with travelers, displaying and educating them about southern mammals, birds, animals, distinctive species,” claimed Katupu.

“I know wherever diverse species are found and I instruct travellers about these animals, their behaviors, and their ecology and social way of living, and survival.”

Katupu is amongst a few woman guides who are courageous more than enough to rest beneath the stars in the darkest evenings, guarding wildlife from poachers.

Katupu has a under no circumstances-ending love for animals and the ecosystem.

“Being a little one who was born in an animal-dominated space, I wished to know far more about animals and the surroundings, hence, I applied to Zimbabwe Parks and Wildlife Management Authority (ZIMPARKS),” she reported. “Even even though I was the only lady all through the 2019 consumption, I could not back again off.”

Questioned on what sort of troubles she has confronted so considerably in the area as a feminine guideline, Katupu claimed: “So much, there are no challenges. l can actually say I’m attaining more encounter in the discipline mainly because it can be practical.”

She mentioned she is inclined to advise and teach Africans on how to preserve and co-exist with the animals and wildlands.

“I am not a media practitioner, but I would appreciate to discuss to individuals and make sure they have a great being familiar with of the ecosystem and our valuable wildlife,” she said. “I am prepared to offer information and facts that can gain societies on what I know.”

But does she really sense men and women are accomplishing great to co-exist with wildlands and wildlife?

“Individuals are not keen to co-exist with animals due to the fact they really don’t have the expertise and abilities to deal with the animals,” mentioned Katupu. “I really feel like individuals are a menace to animals and our natural environment, for that reason, there is a have to have to repeatedly instruct them. I would appreciate if publications on how to co-exist with animals and species are shared in a a lot more popular way.”

Katupu is occasionally hired by neighborhood tourism corporations in Kariba to just take tourists by way of match drives.

She was self-assured about her perform and needs to see much more young women getting up the get the job done to dedicate time and power towards conserving wildlands and wildlife.

Katupu claimed youths will have to take the guide and change their destructive perceptions towards animals.

“To the youth of today, l want to let you know that every thing is achievable,” she explained. “You can do anything which can adjust your existence and other people’s life. I am a youthful lady who has embarked on a journey and I will not give up until I die. My intention is to retain my natural environment on guard and make positive wildlife will not go extinct. Do your element and I will do mine!”

“Do not contact or eliminate animals: go away footprints only and character will just take its system.”

Additional ladies in Zimbabwe are breaking boundaries to grow to be tour guides in a area mostly dominated by gentlemen.

Analysts say at the very least 60 % of the worldwide tourism workforce is female, inspite of the point that just 23 p.c of board users in the sector are ladies.

The woman tour guides in adventure journey, is a single corner of tourism where by gals are specifically beneath-represented.

Experts say they are even now considerably too handful of women of all ages taking up chances in experience journey and wildlife sector. They say many are a great deal far more very likely to take on decrease — paid out cleaning and clerical roles than guiding roles.