Outdoor Recreation Idea of the Day, December 14, 2010

A Free Day at the Park for South Africa

December 14, 2010 (Washington, DC) - From Monday, 13 September until Friday, 17 September, South African National Parks (SANParks) allowed locals with valid identity documents an opportunity to spend a day at a national park of their choice free of charge. According to SANParks General Manager Reynold Thakhuli, the objective of the week was to cultivate a culture of pride in all South Africans in their relationship with the country’s natural, cultural and historical heritage, under the established theme “Know Your National Parks.”

The national parks focus week started in 2006 because a vast majority of South Africans were not accessing the national parks. “SANParks then embarked upon this campaign to encourage all South Africans, especially those from the communities around the parks, to share in what SANParks envisions to be “the pride and joy of all South Africans and the world.”

“Environmental education and protection is the responsibility of everyone, not just a privileged few. If we are to create a sense of ownership of the natural heritage of South Africa in all South Africans, then all South Africans must be able to have access,” said Thakhuli. “We especially want our young people to take advantage of this opportunity because this heritage will be under their protection in the near future,” added Thakhuli.

Bravo, South African National Parks!!!!

Idea of the Day is inspired by the President's America's Great Outdoors Initiative to connect Americans to the outdoors and its IdeaJam blog. ARC’s submissions to the blog can be found if you click here. Additional ideas that have been submitted to IdeaJam can be found in our September 2010 newsletter, which is here.