We have been incredibly fortunate over the past few months to have Azaria Climate Mathonsi working as part of the Tanda Tula team. He joined us a few months ago as an intern, but recently was offered a permanent position in a neighbouring reserve. Although we will miss Azaria terribly we are thrilled for him that he is able to pursue his dream of becoming a full time field guide.
At the beginning of 2021, Azaria was selected as one of two bursary students by the Timbavati Foundation. Before this Azaria had been working for an NGO through which he facilitated various building projects in the local communities. During this time he was able to interact with guests and donors from all over the world which gave him a good background and laid some solid foundations into his development as an apprentice field guide.
Last year Azaria participated in an extremely intensive Field Guide Training course through the South African Wildlife College (SAWC). According to his mentors and trainers he was a pleasure to interact with in the classroom, as well as out in the bush, always extremely polite, personable in all his interactions, and he showed a great eagerness to learn in a team environment.
Azaria achieved over 90% in his FGASA theory exam and conducted one of the best game drives (summative assessment) as an apprentice field guide that has ever been reviewed. So, it seems only fitting that when an opportunity to become a full time guide presented itself Azaria grabbed it with both hands. He will make the most incredible guide and we wish him the best of luck.
Dale Jackson summarises why this man is such an outstanding individual, why he is incredible to work with and why we will miss him: “Azaria had a wonderfully kind and enthusiastic energy about him and is always keen to assist in any department. He interacted with guests in a warm and caring manner, and with a wonderful knowledge of the fauna and flora. I am very happy he found a permanent placement, I am sorry to lose him and I think the industry will benefit a huge amount from having him in it.”