The African School of Storytelling (Afrisos) mentorship programme, which saw Entara host two young mentees for 60 days in the wild, has left filmmaker Luquman Massud from Tanzania and photographer Vanessa Mulondo from Uganda still reeling from their life-changing experience.
The programme, and Entara’s hosting and guiding, exceeded both their expectations in providing opportunities to not only develop their craft but to find their “visual voice” through making a soul connection with the environment.
Says Luquman: “This experience has had a profound impact on me. Living in harmony with nature and observing the delicate balance of life in the wild has instilled in me a greater sense of responsibility towards conservation efforts and a deeper connection with our natural world.
I’m excited to continue my journey to produce more impactful visual narratives that contribute to the conservation of our planet’s precious wildlife. Also, to tell stories about our people and anything that’s inspiring.”
For Vanessa, the adventure presented her with unforgettable moments of raw and unpredictable encounters with the wild – such as a lioness strolling through camp and seeing animals that she did not know existed!
Other treasured moments came through cultural connections and her time spent with the Hazda hunter-gatherers and Datoga people, where she climbed into a Baobab and spent each night marvelling at the infinite night sky.
“I’ve developed a deeper interest in telling grassroots stories, an appreciation for nature’s beauty and a heightened environmental consciousness,” says Vanessa.
“After witnessing the resilience of local communities, it has led me to reevaluate personal priorities, boosting my confidence and giving me a deeper sense of purpose to make a positive impact on the environment and the society that I live in.”
Their message to anyone who has not yet been on safari to northern Tanzania is a resounding: “Go!” Just venture into this magical land, they say, with an open heart and mind. Embrace the rich diversity of both wildlife and cultures, and you will be rewarded with transformative experiences that will stay with you forever.