Many people associate the name &Beyond with luxury adventure travel. CEO Joss Kent (MBA 1997) thinks of it, first, as a conservation company. Tourism pays for the company’s habitat management, community development, and other conservation efforts in Africa, South Asia, and South America. “The conduit, by which we do that, is exposing guests to experiences that bring to life the wonder of the land, wildlife, and people,” Kent says.
Among those projects, Rhinos Without Borders is an ambitious effort to relocate 100 rhinos from South Africa to Botswana. Since 2007, rhinoceros poaching in South Africa has increased 9,000 percent in response to an increased demand for rhino horn, which is used in traditional Asian medicines. If the trend continues, the rhinos could be extinct by 2020. “That is unacceptable,” Kent says. Through this program, the animals are resettled in the Kalahari Desert, a well-regulated reserve with natural geographic defenses.
Kent has been up close with the animals during the relocation and other wildlife management efforts: “It’s a very raw experience to be close with a large wild animal. Our lives are often very removed from the natural rhythms of nature and both the beauty and the savagery that comes with that.”
For Kent, travel is another, essential way to connect to the world. “If you don’t travel and you don’t look for yourself, and learn for yourself, and touch for yourself, and think for yourself, I’m not sure you can be a better kind of global citizen.”
(Published July 2016)
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