On the outskirts of the Masai Mara National Park in Kenya, two Danish investors have created a camp. The Karen Blixen Camp, which is a tent camp, is named after the famous Danish writer, Karen Blixen, who lived most of her life in Africa.
The climate in Kenya is nice, and the view of the savannah where the lions, giraffes, zebras and elephants are living in big numbers is outstanding and far from the experience you can get in a Danish trailer park in rainy November. Also the tents are first class, placed on big mahogany platforms, totally furnished and with private bath, toilet and a big veranda, where you can enjoy the sun rise and set.
When the Danish Prime Minister, Anders Fogh Rasmussen, visited the camp, he was accompanied by Brian Muggeridge Andersen, who is Head of the regional IFU office in Kenya and has assisted the two Danish investors, Martin Sønderby Nielsen and Søren Rasmussen (the founder and owner of Albatros Tarvel), in establishing the camp.
The purpose of the Prime Minister’s visit was to get a first-hand impression of how Danish investors and companies can invest in Africa, earn money and at the same time contribute to economic and sustainable development in a poor country.
The Karen Blixen camp business is based on selling tailor made safari trips to smaller groups of between 12 and 18 people. The trips consist of accommodation and trips around the National Park.
In accordance with IFU’s CSR-policy, there has been a strong focus on securing high social and environmental standards from the start.
This has resulted in the use of materials, goods and services primarily bought from the local Masai community. To protect the environment solar energy, water reducing systems and cooling equipment, without the use of electricity, are used when possible.
At the same time, the Karen Blixen Camp tries to take good care of the employees, giving them proper accommodation facilities, free medical insurance, training and education, and a salary that is higher than the national standard.
The Camp is also engaged in the surrounding society, and together with DANIDA they have worked with improvements on the local health clinic and boarding school, access to micro financing and the planting of 110,000 trees.
IFU has contributed with a total of EUR 680,000 in loan to the Karen Blixen Camp.
Read more about the Karen Blixen camp on www.karenblixencamp.com