Going on an African Wildlife Safari is more than a great vacation. It helps preserve Africa’s animals and their habitats because it helps local people see that they can earn money and support their families by protecting the animals.

How? Wildlife lovers, like you, visit national parks and private game reserves to see the animals in the wild. The local people know a lot about the animals because they grew up with these animals nearby – they might have been farmers and herders with sheep or goats or cattle. So the lodges hire them because of this first hand expertise. When you stay in a safari camp or lodge during your safari – the people who guide you on game driv.es and help you find the animals are the local people.

In addition, there are also lots of other local people who work preparing your meals, doing conservation work to help care for the land the camp is in and otherwise taking care of the camp. From their earnings, these men and women support their families. They know that the biggest reason people spend money to visit wildlife areas is to see animals in their natural habitat. So they recognize if the animals are not protected and the areas that they live in are not protected, then visitors like you won’t come. And then they would have to leave the areas they love and go to the cities to find work – so they love the animals and work to protect them.

There are lots of other things people can do to help protect African wildlife but going on safari is an important and sustainable way to help prevent African wildlife from disappearing.

Cooper has been watching Animal Planet on TV ever since we got home and even found a show about the Elephants in Botswana that he had us all watch at 5 a.m. this morning. Ethan made sure we all knew that yesterday was an official Holiday called "World Lion Day”. And Mason, as you all witnessed during the past 12 days, is making sure he doesn’t miss anything! So many memories to cherish.

David Josefsberg