Low-down during lock-down
29th May 2020
Included in this blog:
- Botswana Situation Update
- The new Shinde rises
- Where the magic happens
- Water levels
- The show must go on
- We are committed
- The future
Botswana Situation Report
Botswana Covid-19 Situation Report by the Botswana Ministry of Health & Wellness
Download here – Situation report 15 May
The new Shinde rises
The Shinde rebuild progress has been fantastic as special permission was received to continue work. Our Managing Director, Fran Hird has seen out lockdown on site.
During this exceptionally challenging time it has been positive to remain on site, seeing the progress and our plans come together before my eyes. Yes, we have experienced delays with some materials remaining down in South Africa, notably parts of the interior, but overall the project has gone very smoothly. Supporting local companies and suppliers is one of our core values, it has been very rewarding to keep this support going during this time. I cant wait to share the new camp with the world.
Where the magic happens
Each camp has care takers tasked with looking after the property and the area. We all have those “To Do Lists” for when we have time, the camps are no different, except now we are getting around to the satisfying task of crossing items off. Our team of carpenters headed up by Abraham (AB) have never been so busy, and their list of things to do just keeps getting longer. New management houses at Shinde and Kanana, redesigning the Kanana Sleep Out Deck, new ablutions for the Footsteps staff, it doesn’t stop there.
The Dinaka Conservancy team remain hard at work with improvements made to the water reticulation system, upgrading the hide ablutions and rehabilitating man-made water holes back to natural.
Being vigilant in our wilderness areas is paramount during this time, as custodians of the land and its inhabitants we take this role very seriously with regular patrols on tracks and channels otherwise explored by our guests.
The arrival of the flood waters has been spectacular. Kanana received huge amounts of water in a very short period of time. The boats are now able to moor right from the fire area in front of camp, something that has not been possible for the last couple of seasons.
See the comparison between the lowest water levels of last year and the current situation. The whole Okavango Delta has been replenished and we eagerly await the second peak of the flood.
The show must go on
Our dedicated reservations team have been working exceptionally hard, full time from home. With the unenviable task of moving bookings and processing cancellations, they take great delight in the “sliver of light” from new enquiries.
At Ker & Downey Botswana we have been working with the trade for longer than most suppliers in Botswana, thus we have endeavoured to implement terms and conditions that not only protect the 180+ staff that we employ but also maintain great trade relationships. Our Corona Virus Cancellation Policy
Our Corona Virus Policy – HERE
We are committed
As a company we really believe we are leading the way in development of local citizens in tourism. We are retaining all our 180+ staff members and our camps remain ready and operational for guests. Our shareholders and you, our loyal partners, are solely responsible for supporting our company and ensuring the future existence of the product from which we will all benefit.
MC Odumetse, Operations Director
Our people, our staff, our legends, whichever name they go by, lie at the heart of all that we do as a company. We have full commitment to our employees and will keep each and every one of them in a job. Our people are our biggest asset, we will weather the storm together, as a family, the KDB family.
Our 2021 rates have been published; we made the decision to hold the 2020 rates for next year.
We get asked all the time by guests, agents and staff alike, when will travel resume, we just don’t know. However, what we do know is that we are ready and waiting, eagerly anticipating our guests return would be an understatement, 24 hours and our doors can be open.
A task team has been established to draft and implement a comprehensive policy addressing standards and procedures post Covid-19. We understand that the requirements of travel will forever be changed due to the impact of the virus. We will provide further information on this once the task team has completed the outline of the policy.