Category Archives: Your Guiding Career

Find purpose, confidence, and adventure with a Career as a Professional Nature Guide

Nature Guiding is one of those dream jobs, envied by many, and for good reason. While it is certainly hard work, the rewards are numerous. Nature Guiding as a professional career has evolved steadily over the last two decades. Today is a much sought-after career option all over Southern Africa.

Is Nature Guiding your future?

The Bhejane Nature Training Advanced Nature Guiding and Wildlife Conservation programme is a unique and comprehensive 3-year The Bhejane Nature Training Advanced Nature Guiding and Wildlife Conservation programme is a unique and comprehensive 3-year programme. The first of a new generation of industry orientated learning programmes you will love you much fun learning is on this course. The programme combines the intimately related fields of Professional Nature Guiding, Conservation/Wildlife Management, Monitoring and Research, and Tourism and Hospitality.  This enables the student to get a quality academic qualification whilst at the same time living and training in the bush. A good alternative to short informal bush courses with little value, or a lengthy academic programme that still leaves them unemployable.  

Our focus is broader than simply training guides for prestigious and upmarket lodge environments. Wildlife Tourism products are diverse and exciting! It follows naturally that your options for guiding are equally diverse and exciting. We prepare guides to get to know themselves better as a starting point, and from there to find the correct niche in the industry that suits their unique personal and professional profile. Do our fun quiz to find out what type of guide you could be.

FGASA Trails Guide Candidates

Bhejane’s commitment to purposeful career training will ensure that you can now do all of this in one place, gain valuable practical experience and qualify for an industry placement at the same time.

In addition to the benefits stated above, this is the only programme of its kind that prepares the student to work in both terrestrial and marine protected areas. Learn more about our exciting camps and courses here.

Open Water Diving on the FGASA Marine Guide Course

Base in Northern Zululand and bordering the Isimangaliso Wetlands Park the college could hardly be in a better place.  Widely recognised as an area of unrivalled biodiversity, this offers the opportunity to live, study and work in one of the most diverse natural environments in Southern Africa.

The programme is suitable for anyone that is interested in working in Wildlife Tourism and Conservation, either as a Professional Nature Guide, Wildlife Monitor, Research Assistant, Conservation Volunteer Coordinator, Marine Guide or Conservation Entrepreneur. The course caters specifically for students that want more than just an entry level guiding qualification, and is looking for a more practical training approach than what is available through traditional academic qualifications. Download our Career Fact Sheets here.

Bhejane Nature Training is a fully endorsed FGASA Training Provider. (Field Guides Association of Southern Africa)

Join us today, to become a part of the Zululand Conservation Legacy . . . 

For more information contact Bhejane Nature Training at info@bhejanenaturetraining.com or go to our website, https://www.bhejanenaturetraining.com/

Veldgids Loopbaan Ontwikkelings-Program

Ons stel graag die Bhejane Loopbaan Ontwikkelings-Program bekend! n  Vars en visionêre benadering tot veldggids opleiding en opwindende byvoeging tot die Bhejane Kursus Portefeulje vir 2020.

Die program bevat 3 fases. n Fondasie fase, Ontwikkelings Fase en Goverderde Fase. Studente met geen vorige opleiding of ervaring begin by die Fondasie Fase.

Studente wat reeds basiese gidswerk of verwante kwalifikasies het kan begin by Fase 2 – die Ontwikkelingsfase. Die gevorderde fase is beskikbaar vir studente wat reeds fase 2 voltooi het, en verder in enige rigting wil spesialiseer, en ook  belangstel om werksondervinding te kry terwyl hulle onder mentorskap is.

Die program het n omvattende fokus en beoog om n diverse groep studente aan die industrie beskikbaar te stel. Studente het die geleentheid om in n verskeidenheid areas te spesialisser en gevolglik self te besluit hoe en waar hulle in die industrie inpas.

Die program sluit in as basis die syllabus en nasionale gids kwalifikasies van FGASA – die Veldgids Assosiasie van Suider Afrika.

Die FGASA komponente word verder gekomplimenteer deur n verskeidenheid spesialis en vaardigheids modules, wat die studente volledig voorberei vir n loopbaan in die Safari en Ekotoerisme industrieë.  Hierdie modules addreseer noodsaaklike werksgereedheid vaardighede soos  kommunkasie, konflikhantering, beplanning en organisasie in die werksplek, entrepreneurskap en die basiese diensvoorwaardes geldig in Suid Afrika.

Spesialis modules sluit in Natuurbewaring, Marienegids, Monitering en Veldnavorsings assistent, Spesialis stapgids, Spesialis voëlgids.

Die Spesialis modules kan ook as losstaande modules voltooi word buite die die konteks van die volle program vir gidse wat reeds voltyds werk.

Kontak ons vir die informasie paket en die 2020 registrasie datums, fooie en vorms.

Nature Guide Career Development Programme

We are excited to introduce the new Bhejane Nature Guide Career Development Programme (CDP). Whether you are just starting out, and have no prior training experience, or whether you are already qualified but need a further boost to launch your career, the unique phased approach of the programme allows you to hop on where it bests suits you!

The programme consist of 3 phases (Foundation, Development and Advanced Phase).  Students with no prior training or experience start at the Foundation Phase.

Students that are already qualified with basic guiding qualifications can start at Phase 2 – The Development Phase, while those that are looking for mentored workplace experience, and a headstart in specialist and advanced course modules can choose to stay on for Phase 3  – The Advanced Phase.

The programme is career focussed and aims to prepare students for active participation in the Wildlife Tourism industry, by developing competent guides, with well formulated career paths in the various specialist nature guiding and related wildlife tourism fields.

The course has been structured to include the national skills programmes as required by the South African Tourism Act, to be recognized and registered as a legal nature guide. These skills programmes are trained using the syllabus of the Field Guides Association of Southern Africa (FGASA)

In addition to these skills programmes, we have added “soft skill” components and Practical Guiding Skills that address areas of essential knowledge that is not included in the skills programmes above. This includes various topics such as Your Guiding Career Path, Specialist modules such as Birding or Marine Guiding, Industry and Workplace skills, Research and Reference skills, and preparation for further study once out in the industry.  Contact us to get the information pack with fees and 2020 intake dates for this exciting new programme.

Reflecting on a year of discovery and growth

By Manuel Weber

The day I decided that I would dedicate my life to the conservation of the superbly beautiful ecosystems that still cover a large part of the African continent, I was only a 6-year old boy that had just moved to Africa, without any understanding or knowledge about the complex world I was about to discover.

But this dream accompanied me over the next 13 years, motivated me every single day, shaped my way of doing things and caused me to collect every piece of information available to me, desperately hoping that it would eventually bring me a bit closer to that big goal. When I found Bhejane, I would never have thought that this would mean the ultimate break-through for me in achieving my dream. At the same time, the course gave me more than just a confirmation for what I always wanted to do: It opened a whole new world for me.

It was like looking for a sparrow and finding a twinspot (I have no issues with sparrows!). In fact, I didn’t even know that twinspots existed. Or what the difference between a sparrow and a starling is. This winter, not even a year after I left Bhejane, I returned and passed my regional birding.

This is only one example for how Bhejane changed my life, my way of thinking and my relationship with nature. The unbelievable perfection and creativity of evolution that Bhejane allowed me to discover still makes my heart beat faster every time I think about it, or realize how crazy it is that spiders can detect stress allelochemicals thanks to the lyriform organs on their legs (first example that comes to my mind). You never stop learning! And there is no bigger honor than working for nature and with nature.

The environment Bhejane is operating in would be more than enough to amaze every lucid-thinking human being. But additionally to that, I got to meet people that think like me. It may sound crazy, but I actually never had considered in the past that there might be other people that share my passion. I probably don’t have to mention that I got to know a large number of special persons that became some of my closest friends and my idols. I had the privilege to meet some people with phenomenal knowledge and skills, to watch them and to learn from them.

It was like coming home. And it will always be like coming home when returning to the places where all this started. Because it’s not going to end soon.

Elegant Grasshoper - Bhejane Gobandlovu Camp

Is this a real career option?

IMG-20190315-WA0125
How about the green hills of Zululand for a different perspective on life!

The world is changing and so are our ideas of how to prepare for a career! University training has become irrelevant and outdated in many fields – especially one as dynamic as Wildlife Tourism. This is great news for many young people that are passionate and ready to take on the world, but dread having to spend hours in yet another classroom before getting out into the working world.

“Like many young adults that loves an outdoor lifestyle, I was so overwhelmed when thinking of how to find a professional job that allows me to be out in nature every day, without having to spend years sitting in a university classrooms or being prepared to volunteer or work for free!

I have always known that I belong outdoors but finding a good -career – one that allows me to help care for wildlife, snorkel along coral reefs, drive through the African bush in an open landrover or walk in the tracks of Africa’s Big Game seemed like an impossible dream! One reserved just for a lucky few!”

This is the lifestory of most of Bhejane’s students prior to attending one of our lifechanging career courses to become a Professional Nature Guide! Despite tourism in Southern Africa still being one of the fastest growing industries, most people are still unaware of the many exciting career opportunities this industry offers to outdoor loving young adults, eager not only to play their part as the next guardians of our natural wildlife heritage but also determined not to spend their lives working boring meaningless jobs that have no bigger purpose!

Click here to have a glimpse of what being Trails Guide is all about

https://youtu.be/n8EUChlmsiw

or a Marine Guide

https://youtu.be/EBmMMpO4FVU

img_20180331_131117_557.jpg
Bhejane Marine Guides enjoy kayaking at Kosi Bay

Even when learning of all the opportunities, many people still feel uncertain and have many questions.  Is it really a proper career? Will I earn enough money to have a decent life, I am not the most confident person – will I be able to do this? Courses can be expensive will the return on my investment be worthwhile?

Consider the story of Pierre. Pierre arrived at Bhejane frustrated with life after struggling through school, unsure about his future options and not fitting the usual mould of those set to work in traditional careers. Not speaking English as a first language really knocked his confidence and he had doubts about his ability to finish a comprehensive education programme. What he DID know, is that he loved doing things with purpose, he loved exploring nature and sharing that experience with others gave him joy and energy!

After starting the programme and being with like-minded individuals his confidence started growing, learning to talk to people happened naturally and he found his niche! His passion for trees – to the awe of many since it is one of the admittedly more difficult fields for guides!  Today Pierre is a senior guide at a prestigious and award-winning game lodge – and the good news is that Pierre is not the exception, rather his is the story of many as 90% of students that attend a full-time career course at Bhejane Nature Training.

Our courses ARE different.

  • You do not work towards one degree or one diploma – you get qualified across a wide range of fields and get certified with a range of skills and knowledge certificates, licences and permits as required for such a dynamic industry!
  • Your ability to pass a test will NOT be the deciding factor for your success. Many people suffering from Dyslexia, Aspergers, and a range of associated learning differences reach phenomenal success on our programmes. Success comes from your passion, commitment and learning with like-minded people.

Change your life, change our world, and join us to become a part of the Zululand Conservation Legacy!

Find purpose, confidence and adventure with a Career as a Professional Nature Guide