Conservation in Africa receives much needed support from Mantis and AccorHotels. Picture: YVES FORESTIER.

 Within six weeks of signing their strategic partnership agreement, renowned South African-based conservation and hospitality group Mantis, and world-leading travel and lifestyle group AccorHotels have formalised a joint conservation venture. The Community Conservation Fund Africa (CCFA), a soon-to-be registered non-profit organisation, was created by the two hotels to support the work of 3 internationally renowned conservation organisations, namely the Wilderness Foundation, Tusk Trust and African Parks.

Dr Andrew Muir, CEO of Wilderness Foundation Global and spokesperson for the CCFA said that pilot seed-funding of $600 000(R7.5m) for year one has been donated by Mantis and AccorHotels.  This seed funding will be used to support projects across Africa through the three arms of the fund.

The fund was officially launched during the Conservation Lab conference brought together by We Are Africa and Beyond Luxury, which took place at Spier, near Stellenbosch, between May 11-13. Two awards were announced at the Fund’s launch.  An award was made to African conservation leaders to enable their participation in the Conservation Lab, and USD

Around $25 000(R312 648) was awarded to The Mahenye Community Conservancy for conservation work in Zimbabwe via the Tusk Trust.

Mantis Founder and Chairman, Adrian Gardiner said the Community Conservation Fund Africa will amplify both Mantis and AccorHotels’ commitment towards halting the accelerating decline of Africa’s wildlife and bring together three internationally renowned conservation organisations. 

Mantis and AccorHotels signed a partnership agreement in April, which saw the Paris-based travel and lifestyle group acquiring a 50% stake in the South African conservation and hospitality group.