There is a good reason why Lapalala Wilderness School has enjoyed the stellar growth that it has over the past 30 years. While you may think that growth and success is a result of the incredible and often life-changing programmes the school offers, or the opportunities it offers young South Africans to develop their environmental knowledge, these are not the main reasons for its success. While Lapalala Wilderness School certainly does all these things, the real reason it has enjoyed such phenomenal growth is that it is offering our country’s youth something they desire – an opportunity to truly reconnect with nature.
The results of having this opportunity are nothing short of spectacular. So many of the children and young adults that attend the programmes offered by this unique school leave Lapalala transformed. More importantly they take with them an acute awareness of the responsibility they have to protect, nurture and grow the earth’s abundant natural wealth.
Considering this immense impact that Lapalala is having on our country’s youth, it could be argued that calling it a school was something of a mistake. Yes, this is a place of learning, but it is so much more than that. It is also a place of discovery, of unforgettable experiences, and for many, it represents a moment in which they discover a calling to go beyond existing in the world, but rather to be instrumental in changing it for the better.