Five Gorongosa tour guides received intensive training and certification in late 2022 and include (from left) Paulo Chassara, Naida Conjane, José Montinho, Eminência Mbalate and Clemente Banda.

Story/photos by Janado Nazare Cher

Four new safari guides received their Field Guide Association of Southern Africa certification in late 2022, bringing the total number of trained and certified staff available to escort visitors on safari through Gorongosa National Park to 16.

Naida Conjane, Eminência Mbalate, Clemente Banda and Paulo Chassara completed their Level 1 Guide training in December of 2022.

A fifth guide, José Montinho completed his Level 2 Field Guide training and will now help others continue their studies and become professionals.

All five guides were trained by their main tutor and coach Test Malunga. Malunga is the park’s activities manager, nature guide and guide trainer. Starting in March, the four trainees received intensive, theoretical and practical training from Malunga onsite. In December, their guide skills were assessed and certified by Sakkie Van Aswegen of Bushveld Training Adventures, a FGASA endorsed training provider. All FGASA safari guides must meet association standards and follow its code of conduct.

Each guide is now fully trained and has the knowledge necessary to accompany and educate national and international visitors about the park geography, wildlife, flora and fauna, and local culture.

The entire team of 16 guides are also certified in first aid for emergency support.

Back row from left, safari guide José Montinho, Sakkie Van Aswegen of Bushveld Training Adventures, and Test Malunga, activities manager, nature guide and guide trainer for Gorongosa National Park. Front row from left Paulo Chassara, Clemente Banda, Eminência Mbalate and Naida Conjane. Photo – Janado Nazare Cher

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