A beautiful image for the Responsible Tourism Policy article

Responsible Tourism Policy

When you book a journey with Where It All Began, you can be assured that only are all the choices on your trip ethical and sustainable but that we, as your travel planner, are also ethical and sustainable ourselves.

OUR AIMS
  • To increase the positive impact of local tourism to Cape Town and the Western Cape, as well as the other parts of the region in which we offer products and services.
  • To maintain a consistent approach in putting people and planet first in all interactions with clients, with suppliers, and with our own staff.
  • To create truly ethical and sustainable but also truly memorable and exceptional travel experiences for our clients.
  • To have a series of ambitious targets towards sustainability and ethicality.
WHERE DOES MY BOOKING FEE GO?

We are a registered business, but we operate as a not-for-profit: this means that once our overheads have been covered for any given year, 100% of the profits for the company are donated to the following organisations.

  • Capricorn Primary – a school in the Vrygrond area of the Cape Peninsula that caters for children from the surrounding disadvantaged community but has exceptional results. We offer two full scholarships to the school (fees, transport and uniform) per year.
  • Literacy Matters Foundation – a literacy intervention project located in several schools in Cape Town. We personally volunteer our time once a week.
  • U turn – a night shelter charity for the homeless and indigent across Cape Town. We attend meetings as local business people to offer our support in ending homelessness in our area and make annual donations to the project.
  • Zama Dance School – a grassroots dance school located in one of the most deprived areas of Cape Town. We encourage our clients to make visits to the school and donate.
  • Pack for a Purpose – we encourage our clients to donate some space in their luggage to bring items with them that are needed locally.
HOW DO YOU ENGAGE WITH AND SUPPORT THE LOCAL COMMUNITY?

We volunteer at Capricorn Primary and at Literacy Matters Foundation in our personal capacity, both as a literacy support worker and doing PR, advocacy and fundraising work for particular projects. 

WHAT KINDS OF LOCAL COMPANIES ARE YOUR SUPPLIERS?

We make use of small, owner-managed companies for our clients’ needs that are based in Cape Town, employ at senior level or are directed/owned by marginalised people. We also personally engage with these companies on an annual basis to establish where and how the communities they visit have been supported by their business.  Typical examples include:

  • Hannival’s Tours – Chris Hannival is the owner and director of Hannival’s and is a coloured male. We encouraged Chris to set up his own tour company back in 2010. He now conducts all our local one-day tours to the Peninsula, Winelands, Overberg and also our private multi-day tours across the Garden Route and West Coast.  Chris grew up in District Six, the area of Cape Town that was slowly erased from the map by the apartheid-era government.
  • Camissa Tours – owned and managed by Khonaye Tuswa, Camissa offers ethical tours of Cape Town’s disadvantaged areas such as Langa township. We work with Khonaye to broaden his product offering beyond just Langa and have created longer journeys for him to market to his clients. We then manage those journeys for Camissa’s clients and create more work for Khonaye as a result.
  • Coffeebeans Routes – multi-award winning and Fair Trade accredited company offering engaging and perspective-altering experiences around Cape Town and Johannesburg that highlight skills in music, art and gastronomy in marginalised people.
  • Uthando SA – umbrella organisation that creates visiting opportunities to grassroots organisations in some of Cape Town’s most deprived areas.
  • Around About Cars – small and independent car rental company with a nationwide reach.  Owner-managed with a black male director and an all-black staff.
  • Parker Cottage, Oude Werf, Vineyard Hotel and many others – we try to only use accommodation suppliers who are fully accredited by Fair Trade in Tourism South Africa and Travelife.  We aim to use a minimum of 50% FTT accommodation suppliers and 50% of marginalised-individual owned businesses in our journeys.
HOW SUSTAINABLE ARE YOU AS AN ORGANISATION?

We spend a lot of time on the road (being a travel company, it’s important!) and this regard, we make use of public transport as far as possible, particularly the excellent train and bus network in South Africa.

At the office, we recycle 85% of all our waste. We have a policy of only using a car or a bus if the journey is longer than 10km, using our bicycles and our heavy-duty bike trailer (which can carry up to 80kg) for journeys under 10km. We also expect to generate 100% of our electricity from solar by the end of 2025. 100% of our office water is heated by solar thermal. We also are aiming to be five times carbon neutral by the end of 2030 through our association with Greenpop, a local greening charity that’s also involved in environmental education in schools.

CAN I ALSO PARTICIPATE AS A TRAVELLER?

Yes, and we’d really welcome your contribution!  There are two very easy ways that you can make a huge difference to the projects that we support.

  1. Consider volunteering some of your time to speak to learners at Capricorn Primary School about your occupation or organisation – many of our clients have said that this was one of their most memorable parts of the trip.
  2. Check out the carbon emissions for your journey (visible on your invoice) and consider making the suggested donation to help absorb some of the emissions.
  3. Visit our list on Pack for a Purpose: We are proud members of Pack for a Purpose, an initiative that allows travelers like you to make a lasting impact in the community at your travel destination. If you save just a few kilos of space in your suitcase and take supplies for the projects we support in need, you’ll make a priceless impact in the lives of our local children and families. Please click here to see what supplies are needed for our projects. 

Pack for a Purpose


Contact Us

Exceed House
Springfield Office Park
Belleville, Cape Town
7450

Cell / WhatsApp +27 72 136 9096

WhatsApp +27 72 136 9096

Email: travel@whereitallbegan.co.za

Contact Us

About

We’re an ethical private travel planning company focused on Southern Africa.

We offer ready-made and also customised holidays and journeys across this unique region of the world.

When our clients travel with us, they are assured that their travel spend is directly supporting local African companies that offer sustainable products and services, both in terms of people and planet.

Ethos

Our logo is an image of a skull found in the Rising Star Cave System in Gauteng, South Africa in 2013. It was named ‘homo naledi’, meaning ‘human of the stars’.

The cave system has so far given rise to the remains of over 15 individuals, making it the largest hominid fossil remains site ever discovered.

Travelling to Southern Africa is truly a return to the source of humankind, to Where It All Began.

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