Seventieth celebration held at Ncemaneni
THE Zulus call the pre-dawn, ‘Mpondo zankomo’ – ‘horns of the cattle’, a poetic reference to the emerging silhouettes of cattle horns in the kraal as the darkness of night gives way to the emerging light of dawn.
After a night of Zulu culture and dance at Shakaland, the 70th ‘Landies through the Ages’ expedition team was rudely awakened by Shakaland’s enthusiastic roosters trying to out-crow each other before the stars had set!
Early morning coffee on the campfire set the stage for an exciting community conservation day at nearby Ncemaneni Primary School to raise awareness of the plight of the rhinos through Rhino Art education and an energetic conservationthemed soccer match.
The day was also the tenth anniversary of the Rhino Art project, which raises awareness of the unrelenting and savage poaching of Africa’s iconic rhinos.
It is important to instil a passion for wildlife among the youth, and the participation of learners from Richard’s Bay High School made this an unforgettable day of conservation education, provision of Rite to Sight spectacles for the poor-sighted, and early childhood development work with teachers and pre-school children from the Ncemaneni community.
For those who like a road less travelled, the team crossed the Phobane Dam wall and wound along dirt roads and through steep hills and deep valleys rich in Zulu history and folklore to the beautiful Babanango Valley with some of the most spectacular scenery in South Africa.
The journey finished at the Isandlwana and Rorke’s Drift battlefields of the Anglo-Zulu War.
After five days of adventure and great humanitarian work, this symbolic 70th anniversary expedition that started with the creation of a big Land Rover-filled ‘70’ shape on the fields of Stonehaven Castle, came to an end as the hard-working Landy team made their way home via the spectacular, twisting roads of Qhudeni to the Tugela River.
Richards Bay High School learners showing their rhino artwork are Salome Walters, Edward Bekker and Anna Muanza with Richard Mabanga (second left)
The man of the match, Andile Shange celebrates with his team mates after the very competitive soccer match Larry Bentley
Kingsley Holgate assists at Mashozi’s Rite to Sight clinic