Alan Griffith says we need more 'Community Conservationists'

| 8. Oct 2014

Konica Minolta South Africa has recently partnered with Good Work Foundation (GWF) to create a Conservation Academy that delivers a digitally-based conservation syllabus to both adult and school-aged learners.


For school-aged learners, GWF’s Hazyview Open Learning Academy is a digital learning hub that rural public-sector schools can plug into. Learners from seven primary schools attend the hub for two hours per week, where they can engage with apps that specialise in math’s literacy, English literacy and now, conservation literacy too.

“The Open Learning Academy model that Good Work Foundation has built is meant to support a quicker transition to ‘digital’ in South Africa’s rural spaces,” explains GWF CEO, Kate Groch. “And that ‘digital’ – once tapped – opens a world of videos, games, apps, and knowledge on so many important subjects, including wildlife.”


At a recent lesson, children from the community’s OVC (orphans and vulnerable children) programme, fired up their iPads and worked through the interactive iBook, Junior Big Five Tracker, where they learnt, amongst other things, the important role that endangered species play in our country’s growing economy of wildlife.


“Our country needs more conservationists and wildlife management specialists who come from the communities adjacent to our most valued wildlife areas,” says Alan Griffith, Managing Director of Konica Minolta South Africa. “We must start engaging young people in the economy of wildlife from a young age, so that in ten years time we no longer need to ‘import’ conservation specialists. Young people from our own communities will be our new activists and will have the skills to protect and preserve. More importantly, they will buy into the importance of protecting our wildlife heritage. We need more community conservationists.”


About Good Work Foundation

Good Work Foundation (GWF) has been working with grassroots education in Africa since 2003. The mission of GWF is to uplift rural communities through access to world-class education and, to this end, GWF was one of the first organisations in Africa to bring tablet computing and learning apps to rural learners, and now, they are the only sub-Saharan organisation working with Stanford University on cloud-based learning.


GWF currently operates four digital learning centres where each centre is made up of academies that deliver basic literacy and career training to school-aged and adult learners. Open Learning Academies focus on English literacy, math’s literacy, digital literacy, conservation literacy and life skills for school-aged learners. Career-Training Academies provide vocational skills courses and digital literacy tuition to adult learners. In all areas, and collaborating with strategic partners, GWF focuses on delivering digital curriculums, state-of-the-art facilities and expert tuition.