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In Conversation With Rob Yordi & SANCCOB

To watch Rob Yordi around animals is to witness someone in his natural element. On first impressions, however, this middle-aged American may not appear to be your typical conservationist. Rob is the Executive Director of the SeaWorld and Busch Gardens Conservation Fund and is responsible for administering essential funding for conservation projects around the world. We catch up with him here on a fact-finding trip back to South Africa and his beloved Eastern Cape.

Ken Denton - Investing In A City

Dublin-born Kenneth Denton is the biggest property owner in the history of Port Elizabeth / Gqeberha. An international property investor and self-confessed introvert, Ken first visited PE in the 1990s when he fell in love with the region and its people. He has since gone on to buy up some of Central Port Elizabeth’s most historic buildings - many of which appear to remain derelict.

Listen here as this soft-spoken Irishman explains, in a rare interview, his plans for the future.

Francine Zana & Her Success

No one can call Francine Zana lucky. From growing up in a Port Elizabeth township to making the progression from chambermaid to company owner, this determined and charismatic lady has worked incredibly hard to make a success of her life.

Her drive and enthusiasm are infectious and her story is one that should inspire not only South Africans from a disadvantaged background but also anyone looking for an example of how to follow your desired path in life.

Paul Gardiner - Following In The Footsteps

Paul Gardiner may have lived in the UK for the past 20 years but is heart is still here in South Africa. In fact, he still refers to the Eastern Cape as ‘home’ and is a passionate ambassador for the province.

The son of Adrian Gardiner, one of the Eastern Cape’s most renowned entrepreneurs, Paul is the CEO of Mantis, a company that his father started in 2000. His is a fascinating story in its own right.

Paul Lister - A Remarkable Man With A Vision

After inheriting his family fortune, Paul Lister decided to turn his back on the corporate world and instead invest his time and money into conservation. The founder of the European Nature Trust, he is the custodian of Alladale Wilderness Reserve in the Scottish Highlands where he hopes to reintroduce wolves into the wild. Inspired by Africa, he’s a remarkable man with a vision.

Tales Of Maqoma

Zukiswa Kona and Ncedisa Maqoma are descendants of that great Xhosa warrior Chief Maqoma (1798 - 1873). Both ladies had grown up listening as the men in their family told tales of Maqoma and his struggles against the might of the British Empire. Today, these determined ladies face their own fight to be recognised as the rightful leaders of their community. Listen here as they tell their story

Garth Davis - Back To Reconnect

Garth Davis is typical of many South Africans. Early in his career, he chose to leave these shores to pursue, what he perceived as, better opportunities overseas. Having made his fortune in California, he is now back to reconnect with South Africa on a very personal journey. As he embarks on a ground-breaking project that will cement his relationship with the country, we hear how recent events have shaped his life and how the Eastern Cape has become part of his story.

The Ukrainian Story

On 22 February 2022, Russia invaded Ukraine. As a result of the conflict, Margarita Matsevich and her family were forced to flee their homeland into neighbouring Slovakia. Along with her son, daughter and her mother as well as Olya Laevskaya, her cousin, Margarita has experienced first-hand the trauma of war and upheaval on a scale last witnessed during World War 2.

To think that this is happening today is unimaginable.

Listen here as their incredible tale is told. It is a story that should make us all stop and take stock of our own situations...

Jenni Gault - The Great Survivor

Every now and then in life, you meet a person whose energy and spirit instantly lifts you. Someone with a story so incredible that you cannot fail to be inspired. Jenni Gault is one such person. Listen in as she shares with us her mountainous journey: One of extreme personal challenges, that she has not only overcome but has actively embraced. Prepare to be inspired!

Div the ‘Green Scorpion’

Div de Villiers is a big man with a big personality. Nearing 40 years of service, Div is a ‘Green Scorpion’ - part of the law enforcement team that help protect and preserve our precious wildlife. Div’s engaging personality makes for an entertaining interview, but listen closer and you will learn of the very serious nature of his work and the challenges he and his colleagues face on a daily basis.

Dr Dean Allen & Dr Andrew Muir

Andrew is one of South Africa’s most influential conservationists and social entrepreneurs, having run conservation and developmental NGOs for over 30 years. He is a specialist in the fields of protected area expansion and management; sustainable and eco-tourism; advocacy and environmental policy and youth and community development.
Wilderness Foundation

11 episodes