The Corona Coastal Cleanup moves on to JBay, following an epic 2-day retreat in the beautiful and idyllic Transkei, one of SA’s many surfing treasures. Trading sharks for cattle, Frank Solomon and the crew parked the bus and kicked their shoes off in Mdumbi. To get a better feel for the environment behind the atmosphere of the location conversations were exchanged over Coronas and sustainably sourced seafood, with two of the shareholders Johan and Sibongile.
The Mdumbi Backpackers is an award-winning company promoting community involvement and sustainable eco-tourism. Sporting panoramic Wild Coast views, nestled in the heart of the Kei the energy was electric, infused with the spirit of the amaXhosa. The Transkei, is one of the last remaining areas in South Africa where chiefs are the authority, livestock the currency and deep-rooted myths the philosophy of the people who populate the houses that scatter the rolling hills.
As a community-driven incentive, the backpackers strives to promote involvement in sustainable eco-tourism. A unique ownership model sees the local employees, community association, and TransCape (Mdumbi’s affiliated NPO) holding shares in the business.
Mdumbi Backpackers is closely involved with the community and helped to establish TransCape, a nonprofit that aims to tackle the significant education, health and socio-economic problems in the community. Transcape’s mission is to provide access to the resources, support, and knowledge necessary for communities to initiate the process of change towards a better quality of life.
For a community that is so closely connected with the natural world around them, the state of the environment is critical to their way of life. Whether it be for commercial or subsistence-based needs, the ocean provides a bounty for us all, as long as it is respected and protected. Even here the scourge of plastic infiltrates the seemingly pristine landscape, littering the shore and surrounding communities. After roaming the shoreline, gathering oysters Frank removed a huge ‘ghost net’ from the rocks as well as an assortment of siff plastic.