In 2022, some camps are organising camp experiences for you to participate in. We are hopeful that they will be able to go ahead. Camps will follow the local conditions closely, and may have to cancel activities if the local COVID-19 situation forces them to do so. If you have already signed up for a camp-activity you will be informed when this happens. We will update the website also, when such decisions are taken. Please check your own local authority travel advisory to see if you can travel to or return from the camp after the activity. At all times, when at camps, please observe it’s COVID-19 policy (such as wearing masks, social distancing, washing hands, etc).
CAMP REEDSDALE REGENERATION
Albany, Eastern Cape, South Africa
Camp Reedsdale Regeneration encompasses 3850 hectares of grasslands, and has been used for sheep grazing since 2001. The property bears indigenous trees, shrubs, and plants, as well as spekboom vegetation, a sprawling, succulent shrub known for being edible and its medicinal properties.
Today, the camp is practicing holistic planned grazing using 1000 sheep, in order to speed up the regeneration of the once degraded and compounded soils. They are also striving to harness maximum rainfall on the property by using sustainable techniques, slowing down wind and water erosion by strategic vegetation, rehabilitate already eroded parts of the land, and create booming ecosystems that foster plant, animal, and human biodiversity.
The strategy is to focus on preventing further damage to the overly weathered grasslands from more environmental degradation. This entails transforming the degraded soils into fertile, rich organic matter that better absorbs rainfall, improving infiltration, and replanting vegetation that will keep the soil intact by their healthy root systems in order to alleviate the stress of soil erosion during hard rainfalls, floods and strong winds.
What to expect at camp
Not only will campers learn an array of teachings on regenerative techniques and get hands-on experience with practical restoration work, but expect bright blue skies, crystal clear nights for stargazing around a campfire, and group meals. You will also have the opportunity to go mountain hiking, try your hand at honey making and taste delicious, affordable tapas, wines, and organic, local, grass-fed meat.
Achievements to date
- 215 hectares of grassland has been rehabilitated to date, using hoof action by grazing animals. These animals participate in the land restoration by breaking up soils surfaces, trampling decomposing vegetation, helping to incorporate seeds and also by adding nitrogen rich fertilizer to the soil.
- Gum trees have been removed which has increased the underground water table.
- We are currently working on a test phase of spekboom cuttings in our camp nursery.
Who is needed
Longterm campers needed are skilled researchers, university graduates seeking practical experience, photographers, carpenters, plant nursery helpers, general helpers, other skilled workers.
Short-stay campers are also welcome to participate in our land restoration work and will have opportunities to attend future ecosystem restoration courses.
Vision and socio-economic context
Camp Reedsdale Regeneration’s long-term vision is to create a sustainable and regenerative agricultural business model for the farmers in their community along with aiding in restoring 40,000 hectares of regional degraded land, which will help improve the well-being of future generations. The creation of sustainable livelihoods will be derived from the collaborative research and land restoration provided from the camp, partnering universities and organisations, and is hoped to significantly aid their struggling and impoverished community members. By creating more job opportunities, they can also help prevent urbanisation by creating stronger rural environments. Not only will restoring these vast grasslands have an economic benefit to the local region, but they will be actively reducing global warming by creating greater sinks for carbon retention.
Achievements to date
Cost to stay at Camp Reedsdale Regeneration
Costs include tented or housed accommodations, and 3 healthy, homemade farm meals daily. Please contact our camp for more information.
Children’s play facilities
Water retention (soil)
Erosion prevention Agroforestry Restoration livelihoods Natural building Water Retention (pond)
Holistic grazing techniques
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What you must do to ensure your own safety at an Ecosystem Restoration Camp
Your safety is very important to us. Most camps are in locations that are completely safe for you to travel to. Some camps are in locations where there is civil unrest, higher levels of crime, or in areas where there could be severe nature events (earthquakes, tornados, vulcanic eruptions). We strongly advise you to check with your national authority’s travel advisory service to see if there are specific travel advisories for the region you are travelling to. We strongly advise you to comply with that travel advisory. If there is a negative travel advisory for the area you plan to go to, we want to impress on you that it is your decision to not heed the warnings and go. ERC can then not be liable in that situation if something happens to you.
Work at camps is usually safe. The camp coordinators make your safety their highest priority too. But you will be working with tools and sometimes even (heavy) machinery. Sometimes the terrain can be slightly treacherous. Heat or cold can become a problem for people at work that do not take the necessary measures to prevent injury from weather conditions. Especially in remote locations, all people at an Ecosystem Restoration Camp will need to watch out for eachother’s safety. For this reason we ask you to also sign our Code of Conduct, through which you commit to contributing to a safe environment at camps for all that are there with you. Take yours and all other camper’s safety seriously! Together, while watching over eachother, we can restore our ecosystems safely and successfully.
Stichting Ecosystem Restoration Foundation /
Ecosystem Restoration Camps 2020