The small Northern Cape town of Springbok is known for many things. Its abundance of spring flowers and leafless quiver trees. The large antelopes that roam the scrubland. And as the home of a young boy growing up on a small-scale farm filled with livestock, such as goats, sheep and cattle.
From these roots Schalk Human grew, and even though the family later moved to Kimberley (where he finished high school) a deep love for nature had already settled in his bones.
It’s no wonder, then, that his travels have finally seen him end up as a member of the Camp Jabulani management team.
Schalk joined the transport industry right after school in 2002, a road that took him through most of southern Africa. He lived in Namibia for two years, and then in Botswana for eight – ideal countries if you’re the type of guy that needs to access nature easily and quickly!
Schalk is clearly not, and never will be, a city person. So when his travels took him to Johannesburg in 2012, he decided to do a course in Nature Field guiding with the Limpopo Field Guide Academy, completing it at Mabula Private Game Reserve. After qualifying, he was offered a position at Entabeni Private Game Reserve. A year later, his feet finally found their way to a position as a guide at Camp Jabulani.
But Schalk isn’t one to rest much: he obtained a Trails qualification in March 2014, and plans to have his level 2 qualification by the end of 2016. And in March 2015, he became Maintenance Manager at Camp Jabulani. Schalk confesses that taking care of such a beautiful place wasn’t easy, but he still continued being a guide whenever he had the chance. He’s since taken on the role of Safari Manager, and relishes every moment!
So what makes Schalk happy? The Camp Jabulani elephant herd, for one. The awed expressions on guests’ faces when they experience the animals for the very first time are a real kick, and hosting a very appreciative guest makes his day. New challenges? Bring them on! He strives to make Camp Jabulani the best all-round lodge to stay at – in the world.
Not bad for a boy from Springbok with Africa in his blood!
Adine, Camp Jabulani MD, has this to say: “Schalk is a solid, trustworthy person. He’s the go-to guy whenever there’s trouble, and a vital part of the management team. You might not always meet him at the lodge, but he is there and if you are lucky, you’ll run into him on an evening shift. His wife, Natasha, works at HESC as a financial assistant and they are the proud parents of a baby son: Baby Schalk! A real sweetheart, always smiling and almost never crying.”