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Our Planet, Wildlife and People

Responsible Tourism in Morocco

All our team here at Specialist Morocco care with a passion for the future of our amazing planet, its wildlife and its people. We are an ethical organisation that adheres to the principles of responsible tourism and sustainable travel, fair trade, business ethics and corporate social responsibility. We recognise that our responsibility extends to all interested parties to this business including not only our customers and local partners, but also local host communities, our planet, its wildlife and nature.

Our Local Partners in Morocco

Specialist Morocco works in close partnership with locally owned and managed companies in Morocco. We feel this approach has a more direct benefit on the local distribution of income from tourism. We support and fully endorse the recruitment and training of local guides, local group tour managers, drivers and representation staff.

Employing Local Guides & Leaders

With our guiding principle of employing local people wherever possible our guests see a direct benefit in the improved local knowledge of our local team, whether that be knowledge of flora, fauna, history or just general Moroccan life. Through this approach we can also maximise the amount of your tourism revenue that is delivered directly into the heart of the local economy, whilst at the same time providing our guests with a holiday which is fully financially protected by our bonding schemes and insurance cover.

Promoting Responsible Tourism

Specialist Morocco is also determined to do what we can to help minimise any negative impacts on the environmental, wildlife and cultural welfare of Morocco through promoting responsible visitor behaviour; promoting waste reduction; facilitating cultural exchange between guests and local communities; supporting local businesses, goods and services; encouraging guests to eat local foods rather than imported foods; encouraging the conservation of natural resources like electricity and water; and promoting the importance of protecting the local environment and nature.

Sahara Safari Camp

In October 2010 we opened Morocco's first luxury eco-camp incorporating the following:

1.  Strict control of water usage, but enough for guests to wash in hot water each day.
2.  Use of recycled tyres to make buckets and water jugs for showering.
3.  Use of ‘bio-toi’ loos with bio-degradable bags – avoids harmful chemical loos.
4.  Fresh sustainable fruit/vegetable/meat bought and grown locally in Draa Valley.
5.  Staff employed from nearest local habitation – Tagounite. Training and development key.
6.  Use of camels and mules to supply camp with water and produce – provides income locally.
7.  No permanent structure/buildings to minimise damage to the environment. Just long steel pegs!
8.  Solar and dynamo-powered torches/lanterns used in camp.
9.  Solar Gorilla provided for guests to charge camera batteries.
10.  Medium to long-term aim to develop and support village projects.

Our Commitment to Saving Energy

In 1992, the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro highlighted, for the first time, the real threat of climate change on a global scale. The following year, the UK Government established The Energy Saving Trust and set a target for reducing UK emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2), one of the greenhouse gases responsible for climate change, by 20 per cent of 1990 levels by 2010. The Energy Saving Trust is a non-profit organisation, funded both by government and the private sector. Almost half of the UK's carbon dioxide emissions come from energy we use every day - at home and when we travel. By saving energy we can all help prevent climate change.

Making a personal commitment to saving 20% of the energy we use

In response to the threat of climate change and to help preserve the places that matter most to us, each of us at Specialist Morocco has made a personal commitment to save 20% of the energy we use.

Our offices and other responsible initiatives

Each of our team makes an effort to recycle as much plastic, cans, paper, bottles, cardboard, printer cartridges and batteries as possible. We use scrap paper for making written notes and as a virtual business strive for a paperless working environment. We purchase fair trade products as a matter of course.

In Partnership with Friends of Conservation (FOC)

Friends of Conservation (FOC) is an international conservation organisation, with over 25 years operational experience in the field. Formed in the early 1980’s in response to the poaching which was decimating species, particularly rhino, FOC’s protection programmes in Kenya’s renowned Masai Mara National Reserve, helped halt the decline and restored the rhino population to more viable levels. FOC continues to work with communities living outside the Reserve today, to encourage sustainable use of natural resources whilst preserving wildlife and habitat.

Their activities and those of their partners, include the following areas:

»  Wildlife and habitat protection  »  Environmental programmes  »  Anti-poaching campaigns  »  Wildlife monitoring  »  Human/wildlife conflict management  »  Fuel efficiency and reforestation  »  Carbon-reduction projects  »  Promoting sustainable tourism

Carbon Reduction

Recognising the many benefits that tourism brings to countries, we offer travellers the opportunity to compensate towards the environmental impact of their flights by supporting projects which aims to reduce levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2). These involve renewable fuels, land acquisition/protection and reforestation programmes whilst offering many other advantages for local communities too.

All of the money donated will go to the project specified. To find out more about how you can help, please visit: Friends of Conservation.

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