The Kusini Fund

For those who know me and are familiar with the Kusini Safaris story, you will know that making a positive difference to the communities and landscapes we visit on safari is the driving force behind our existence.

I set up a safari company the same way a lot of businesses start - largely by accident. Having already fallen out with safari guiding and deciding on a career in conservation, my wife and I came to Tanzania and Ruaha. It didn’t take me long to figure out that these places could really do with more visitors. It also didn’t take me long to realise that the relentless grants treadmill that all conservation projects have to contend with, wasn’t for me either. Maybe there was a way around both problems?

Through the years we have sought to explore this area between the tourist business, the conservation industry, local communities and institutions. Taking clients off road to visit communities, going to the off beat destinations, facilitating client philanthropy, taking donors to the projects they support, raising money during the pandemic and so on. We have consistently given as much financial support as possible to the people we work with along the way. Not through occasional gestures or counting how much park fees we’ve paid but by talking to the people doing the work. Many of these people are our friends and mentors.

The Kusini Fund seeks to formalise this effort by providing a separate entity for us and our guests to focus their fundraising efforts. The fund will distribute money to a select group of projects working in our core areas of Southern Tanzania. The fund will also support initiatives in Tanzania and across Africa where we go on privately guided safaris and of course those handpicked by our donors. 


How Kusini Supports Conservation Through The Kusini Fund:

  • Direct Funding: The Kusini Fund allocates a portion of their profits directly to support grassroots conservation projects. This ensures funding reaches the initiatives that need it most.
  • Community Engagement: The Kusini Fund prioritises projects that directly benefit and empower local communities. This fosters a sense of ownership over conservation efforts and ensures long-term sustainability.
  • Transparency and Impact: The Kusini Fund operates with transparency, providing regular updates and reports on the projects they support. This allows donors and travellers to see the tangible impact of their contributions.

Donations will be unrestricted - meaning that recipients are free to spend the money how they choose; on diesel, on salaries or whatever their needs may be at that time. Projects will not have to compete for funds and we will make sure efforts are not duplicated. Fundraising rounds for special projects will take place throughout the year with the Kusini network and guests will be encouraged to make contributions as part of their safaris. The Kusini Fund will be a separate entity from Kusini Safaris, financials will be conducted accordingly and regular impact reports produced. 

The first special project for The Kusini Fund will be raising money for new bandas (roofs) for the student accommodation at Mkuyu Guide School. The current roofs are made of grass and being several years old, are falling apart and won’t survive another wet season (December). We have already received a very generous donation of $5,000, but we need your support to hit our goal.

You can see the current bandas and tents (which also need replacing) below. Alongside the new classroom, we helped to build last year, the tents will have corrugated iron roofs like this. 

Find out more about Mkuyu Guide School here


The Power of Grassroots Conservation:

The Kusini Fund focuses on supporting a diverse range of projects tailored to the specific needs of local communities and wildlife populations in Southern Tanzania. Here are some examples:

  • Anti-Poaching Initiatives: Supporting local anti-poaching patrols and wildlife monitoring programs.
  • Education and Awareness: Providing educational programs for communities about the importance of conservation and sustainable resource management.
  • Habitat Restoration: Supporting projects that restore degraded habitats and create corridors for wildlife movement.
  • Community Livelihood Programs: Developing sustainable livelihoods for local communities to reduce their dependence on wildlife and promote co-existence with nature.

Together, We Can Make a Difference:

The Kusini Fund demonstrates the power of collective action. By supporting this innovative initiative, you're contributing to a future where:

  • Local communities thrive alongside wildlife: Conservation becomes a source of empowerment and economic benefit for local communities.
  • Southern Tanzania's wildlife flourishes: Endangered species are protected, and ecosystems thrive.
    A model for sustainable conservation is established: The Kusini Fund's approach paves the way for a future where responsible tourism and conservation go hand in hand.
  • Your choice makes a difference. Choose Kusini Safaris and The Kusini Fund, and embark on a journey that not only creates unforgettable memories but also leaves a lasting positive impact on Tanzania's wildlife and communities.

If you would like to donate, volunteer your expertise, or if you know some worthy causes that deserve some attention or you want to get involved in any way, get in touch and I'll be more than happy to discuss further.

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