iSimangaliso Wetland Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is one of the top eight biodiversity hotspots in the world. Yet, amidst such natural plenty, it is also one of South Africa’s poorest regions, with over 80 percent of the surrounding people living in dire poverty, and only 15 percent formally employed.
Meet Andrew Zaloumis, a lifelong conservationist and anti-apartheid activist, who founded the Rural Enterprise Accelerator Program (REAP) to transform this aid-dependent economy. By providing locals with training, mentorship and seed capital to start small businesses, the program is ensuring that both people and nature thrive around this beautiful and historical national park.
This is part of a four-part series spotlighting the 2016 McNulty Prize Laureates.