‘Pack For a Purpose’ and Have Way More Space in Your Luggage for Tacky Giraffe Curios

I kind of love that Pack for a Purpose is taking over the world. I first heard of it in 2012 when I was working at Madikwe Safari Lodge, a place I would SO highly recommend, especially if you’re traveling with ducklings. People ducklings. Madikwe is a terrible place to bring birds.

Image from http://www.madikwesafarilodge.co.za. You know I used to have my own images and you also know my hard drive crashed and I lost every safari photo I’ve ever taken and now I just have to borrow or steal photos, like this one…

Guests would often show up at our lodge and sign a bunch of indemnity forms and get handed their room keys and then plonk a bag down on the table and say ‘oh yeah, here’s all my Pack for a Purpose stuff.

Huh? What was this ‘Pack for a Purpose?’

Turns out it’s a pretty rad system. You know how when you travel to Africa you want to bring back a ton of stuff like wooden giraffes and beaded giraffes and stuffed giraffes and giraffe bangles and giraffe earrings and giraffe tea towels and giraffe t-shirts and giraffe mugs (I’m just using my mom as an example here) and like, so many kikois? Pack for a Purpose can help you make that space in your suitcase. Here’s how:

Must. Buy. Tacky. Giraffe. Souvenirs.

The most gorgeous kikoi towel ever. If you pack for a purpose you’ll have space to bring back 10 of these from Africa. Win!

What they do is partner with various hotels and safari lodges in South Africa (and in other countries, but let’s focus here) and those lodges in turn partner with local projects that need stuff. More often than not, the charity in need of stuff is a school or orphanage who needs school supplies or clothes. So what you’d do is look up on the website what your lodge’s charity needs, then head to Walmart or your closet before you leave home and find all that stuff. It’s like a scavenger hunt. But funner. Then you’d stuff all the stuff in your suitcase, give it away when you get to Africa and voila, more room for giraffe paraphernalia and kikoi towels. Beautiful.

As a safari guide, I’ve found that so many of my guests want to do something for the local people but they don’t know what. Thy don’t know what’s acceptable and what’s not or where there are boundaries. That’s okay. It’s a touchy subject.

I think that all but the most ignorant tourists (and there are a few) can see pretty quickly when they visit a place that there’s this crazy huge disparity between the fancy lodge where they’re staying and the people who live near it. I’m asked often whether they should give money to community schools (no) or candy to children (no). That’s asking for trouble.

Trust your safari guide for advice? Beware the blonde…

It’s a sad fact, but in Africa, you can never be sure where your money actually goes, so it becomes really important to choose your channels wisely.

And that’s why I love Pack for a Purpose. They’ll make sure that the right things get to the right people. A project like this is really the first baby step you can take on the road to being a super-cool responsible traveler.

This is how the good people at Enkosi Africa packed for a purpose…

Take a look at the website here: Pack For A Purpose

And I’m going to ‘big up’ all the companies in my gorgeous country that partner with them, below. If you’re off on safari soon and you see the lodge you’re headed to on this list, then get excited!

Happy packing y’all…

Safariosophy loves you: 

Absolut Tours & Safaris

African Game Lodge

Amakhala Game Reserve

Ant’s Nest & Ant’s Hill

Antrim Villa

Bayflowers Guest House

Berluda Farmhouse and Cottages

Blyde River Canyon Lodge

Blyde River Wilderness Lodge

Bushmans Kloof Wilderness Reserve & Wellness Retreat

Camp Jabulani

Cape Cadogan Boutique Hotel

Cape Splendour Tours & Safaris

Cathedral Peak Hotel

Chitwa Chitwa Private Game Lodge

Cliff Lodge

de Pakhuys

Fugitives Drift Lodge

Giltedge Africa

Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre

Isibindi Zulu Lodge (SUPER LOVE)

Jenman African Safaris

JP Kleinhans Safaris

Kariega Game Reserve

Kwa Maritane

Lebo’s Soweto Backpackers

Lion Sands Game Reserve

Madikwe Safari Lodge (SUPER LOVE)

Makalali Private Game Lodge

Mateya Safari Lodge (SUPER LOVE)

More Quarters Apartment Hotel

Rocktail Camp (SUPER LOVE)

Salute Africa

Samara Private Game Reserve

Savanna Private Game Reserve

Spier Hotel

Tau Game Lodge

The Backpack

The Cavern

The Oyster Box

The Peech Hotel

The Twelve Apostles Hotel and Spa

Tuningi Safari Lodge

Ulusaba Private Game Reserve

Wilderness Touring

ZuluWaters Game Reserve

This was me at Isibindi Zulu Lodge last week. You want to go there.

But Anna, my safari destination isn’t on this list. Now what?”

Pack for a purpose anyway. Bring pencils and school supplies and clothes and things to South Africa anyway and ask around when you arrive. Your lodge should be awesome and happy to help you get your donations to where they’re needed most.

This is such a great way to make your whole safari experience better. Promise.

Need to know more? Need more advice? Email me, little safari-going kittens.

Love Safariosophy.

One thought on “‘Pack For a Purpose’ and Have Way More Space in Your Luggage for Tacky Giraffe Curios

  1. Rebecca Rothney says:

    Thank you so much for the wonderful shout-out for Pack for a Purpose! We have posted it in the In The News section of our website under Around the Web.
    With gratitude,
    Rebecca Rothney
    Founder and Chairperson of Pack for a Purpose


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