An American tour firm has shined as a multinational company that is a rare example for giving back to the communities where it operates.
Thomson Safaris won the hearts of the Maasai community for fulfilling its corporate social responsibility right at Ngorongoro district in Arusha region.
In a country where the search is always on for corporate social responsibility success stories, Thomson Safaris has shined as a multinational company that is seen as doing most things right.
Natural resources rich Ngorongoro district council vice-chairperson Edward Maura said the Thomson Safaris spirit towards the community where it operates merits emulation.
“If all tour company would be considerate like Thomson Safaris to the community, I am sure the living standards of Tanzanian communities would have been improved significantly,” said Mr. Maura, the Nainokanoka ward councilor.
He was receiving the Nainokanoka primary school teachers’ furnished modern house worth $40,710 built by Thomson Safaris in partnership with a US-based organization, Focus on Tanzanian Communities (FoTZC).
“We are ready to offer the company a potential area to invest in Nainokanoka village to stimulate the area’s economic undertakings,” he stated.
Judi Wineland, the director of Thomson Safaris and board member of FoTZC, said that Tanzania is becoming a shining star on the continent in various areas.
“Tanzania is shining because of wise elders, both past and current leaders the way they have paved the way for tomorrow’s leaders,” she told the audience.
“Citizens and leaders have to make choices and only a good education allows you to make good choices,” she explained.
“Education shows you opportunities you never thought possible. Education allows you to make changes if you want,” she stated.
One must get an education and for that to happen there must be good teachers.
“Today we pass over to the people of Tanzania housing for those most precious teachers who will lead you into the future...and teach you how to make choices, and show you opportunities,” the corporate organizer stressed.
She said tourism brings guests who visit the villages and who believe that education is the foundation for tomorrow.
“For the past 30 years Thomson Safaris has brought guests to Tanzania.
Many of them joined together to form an NGO: FoTZC ...and they have focused on Nainokanaoka along with Thomson Safaris. We thank the guests of Thomson Safaris and the donors of FoTZC for their generous gifts to this village,” she concluded.
FoTZC director of development, Ms Eliza Hatch, pledged to continue supporting the community for a better future.
Ngorongoro District Commissioner Elias Wawa-Lali commended Thomson Safaris directors Rick Thomson and Judi Wineland for their willing hearts to giving back to the poor community.
“These people have been extending a helping hand in many communities
in Ngorongoro district in education, health and relief for calamities like hunger,” he said.
Ngorongoro MP Saning’o Telele also expressed his gratitude for the company for its efforts to uplift Maasai communities.
Thomson Safaris general manager John Bearcroft says by the end of the travel season 2013-14, the total contribution to communities since 2008 through various projects, business, and fees is expected to have reached $919,520 at current pace.
Also by the end of the period under review, FoTZC projects would have spent a total of $502,583 on community projects in villages surrounding the Enashiva Nature Refuge since 2008.
Projects completed include four modern two-in-one teachers homes at four different schools of Sukenya, Orkiu, Soit Sambu primary schools and Soit Sambu Secondary, worth more than $40,000 each.