Africa is her home. She feels blessed to live in South Africa, sharing long runs with her family on their farm in KwaZulu-Natal province. Colette will soon run the Ultra AFRICA Race with us in Mozambique. A beautiful country and an ideal place to highlight her work within Peace Parks Foundation.
Responsibility and commitment on a daily basis
She grew up with a father who ran ultramarathons. “Running is in my blood and it is an easy hobby to explore new places and sceneries. It is also my way to relax and switch off.” she says.
Colette has been working in the conservation field in southern Africa for 25 years and it seems that her private and professional life are in perfect harmony. With her husband and their two daughters, they farm with cattle, sheep and maize. The girls have their own horses and look after their calves, chickens and ducks. Producing most of their vegetables, meat and milk, the family favours self-sufficiency.
In the same state of mind, Colette can be proud of her work as a Project Manager in the Combatting Wildlife Crime Programme of Peace Parks Foundation.
“My work is to combat wildlife crime in protected areas of southern Africa, with a focus on using technology. I oversee a suite of projects in Zambia, Mozambique, and work with South African government parks. This is a challenging environment which requires us to come up with new solutions and technology to counter the poaching surge.”
Colette highlights that nature in all forms, all over the globe, is undergoing a dramatic decline. Since 1970, monitored wildlife populations around the world have declined by an average 69%. Africa should see its population growing to approximately 2.5 billion people by 2050, it is to say a quarter of the world’s people. Preserving biodiversity and natural ecosystems balance will also help to preserve humankind so dependent on what nature provides.
Facing significant and daunting challenges for 25 years
Peace Parks Foundation has been working to restore transboundary landscapes, and facing the many challenges that come with this work, for 25 years. Established to facilitate the development of transboundary landscapes in Africa, Peace Parks aims to, by 2050, secure 90,000 square kilometers of functioning transboundary landscapes, and are currently actively working in 13 protected areas.
For example, In Mozambique, Peace Parks is the long-term co-management partner in the rehabilitation and management of four protected areas. One of the achievements of this partnership is the successful rewilding of rhinos as a flagship species in the Zinave National Park. After the last arrival in 2023, 37 rhinos are living now in the park.
Colette Terblanche played a key role in this programme. “My role in this re-introduction was specifically on the technology used to safeguard the rhinos, by fitting tracking devices whereby the park can monitor their movement.”
Professional care continues as the black and white rhinos coming from South Africa acclimate to this new environment, their protection being ensured through a team of Quick Response Force rangers and state-of-the-art conservation technology. Furthermore, the empowerment of local communities living around the park is significant, enabling them to participate and share in its economic returns, fostering equitable and sustainable conservation.
Running to emphasise the natural beauty of Mozambique… and more
When we ask Colette her motivation for running the Ultra AFRICA Race, she first tells how she appreciates the people, the magnificent beaches and landscapes of this special country and the great work being done by Peace Parks to assist Mozambique to conserve and restore landscapes. The commitment of the country to prevent wildlife crime and safeguard biodiversity should encourage more people to discover it.
“This is a country worth visiting, and I hope through this run, it emphasises the wonderful people and nature and why Peace Parks support Mozambique.”
We bet Colette will take pleasure to run along Mozambican villages and beaches.