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SanParks opens 2021 national parks week

South African National Parks (SanParks) in partnership with TotalEnergies Marketing South Africa and First National Bank (FNB) has opened the 16th annual South African National Parks Week. The week ends on 28 November 2021.
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Image source: Gallo/Getty

Dumisani Dlamini, SanParks acting chief executive officer, says that under the established theme Know Your National Parks, the weeklong campaign encourages citizens through the #LiveYourWild campaign to visit a national park for free and be part of a world-wide campaign.
"SANParks is striving to provide all South Africans with equal opportunities and in line with our vision of 'a world class system of sustainable national parks reconnecting and inspiring society', we want to inspire people to take pride in and to enjoy their national parks while spending time in nature."

Dlamini said that free access will be granted to South African day visitors. "This is also an effort to reach out and allow all citizens a chance to freely access something they might not have been exposed to and to start to understand the importance of conservation."

The free access to the parks does not include accommodation or any commercial activities in the park. Kruger, Addo Elephant, Augrabies, Agulhas, Table Mountain and the Tsitsikamma section of Garden Route National Park will only have free access until Friday 26 November.

Natural heritage

"This week is also an opportunity to showcase all the national parks as key and affordable local holiday destinations which offer unique experiences that families and individuals from all backgrounds, cultures, lifestyles and communities can enjoy."

Dlamini said that due to the country still being on Alert Level 1 of the lockdown in November… "we would like to remind the public that a quota system will apply in most of our national parks throughout the focus week. We have to remain responsible and alert and therefore would like to request the public to continue to observe the Covid 19 protocols, which are sanitising, wearing of our face masks and observing social distancing."

Mariam Kane-Garcia, TotalEnergies Marketing South Africa’s CEO and executive VP Southern Africa, says: "With our ambition to be a major player in the energy transition and being a partner of SanParks for more than 62 years, we remain committed to the conservation of wildlife and the collective heritage of South Africans which are fundamentally associated with sustainable development.

"TotalEnergies Marketing South Africa is honoured to be part of meaningful programmes geared towards nature conservation in South Africa. We are particularly proud of the annual SANParks Week which allows free entry to SA citizens and gives everyone the opportunity to experience the parks first-hand.”

Cultivating knowledge

Sipho Silinda, CEO, FNB Public Sector Banking says: "The 16th annual SanParks week is a notable milestone in our commitment to continue enabling South African citizens to explore our country’s natural heritage. While not forgetting that the tourism industry is still one of the most affected sectors by the Covid-19 pandemic, it, therefore, remains vital for our communities and individuals to support our national heritage and culture."

SanParks started this campaign in 2006 to encourage all South Africans, especially those from the communities around the parks, to share in what SanParks believes to be the pride and joy of all South Africans and the world.

"The survival of the South African national parks system and our natural and cultural heritage lies in the people of South Africa and we are focused on involving young people and communities, to cultivate knowledge of the importance of conservation and an appreciation for the country’s natural heritage," concluded Dlamini.

Visit SanParks for more information.
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