Taking on the responsibility of rescuing wild animals in need and to provide a safe
home where they could be given a 2nd chance certainly has been a difficult road
with many uphill battles.
However the support of so many loving, caring people that have shared my dream
and made it their own has given me ability to remain determined to continue to strive
to make this world a better place for at least some wild animals.
At SanWild I believe they soon learn to trust again and not fear persecution from
mankind. I do have an unlimited love for all animals, but have made it my
life’s journey to help wild animals in particular.
Growing up in Namaqualand as an adoptive child was filled with love
and all sorts of wild animals. Raised by an Afrikaans father and Irish mother,
I could not have asked for better parents. My father Koos Joubert instilled
a love for wild animals in my heart and soul not equalled by many people.
Always ready and willing to assist his crazy little blue-eyed girl with yet another
orphaned or injured animal he would transport me to the local GP
demanding that he, despite not being a veterinarian,treat any animal that needed help.
I grew up on a cattle farm in the Waterberg district of Limpopo Province.
Although my parents farmed with cattle wild animals roamed naturally
across our farms Lea and Mooi Meisie Fontein. I always loved nature
and could spend hours observing wildlife. As is the case with most
South Africans that grew up in rural areas I started hunting for the pot
at a relatively young age.
My life however was to change drastically after meeting up with a woman
that soon convinced me that helping wild animals needed a lot more courage
than to go out with a gun to kill them. As I replaced my hunting rifle with a
bottle of milk and had to get involved in rearing and caring for orphaned herbivores
in between my job as a agricultural representative for herbicides, my opinion on
I realized that despite what I had believed in the past animals were sentient creatures
and deserved our respect but above all in a modern world they desperately needed
our help. As man continues to take more for himself wild animals inevitably are on
the receiving end of our uncaring nature. I no longer wanted to kill wild animals; not even
for food. Without me realizing I had become someone else.Before I could even marry Louise Joubert,
she had me sell my hunting rifles and high-jacked most of my earnings and income at the time to rent
a piece of land with the option to purchase it. Here she pitched a tent and invited me to “move in” and this is where
our journey started. We set up the SanWild Wildlife Trust in 2000 to protect the land and animals already rescued
and under our care. I guess the rest is history.. 🙂
My passion for wild animals started from a very young age when my father
brought home a baby vervet monkey that a farm worker picked up on
Back then, the standard practice for Nature conservation was to
euthanize orphaned and injured animals as there was no
wildlife sanctuaries that could cater for them, a concept that
in my young mind was beyond comprehension.
My parents sharing a love for animals contravened the law
by deciding to raise the monkey and subsequently many other
orphaned animals over the years.
We were fortunate in the sense that we lived on a farm and
the animals could come and go as they pleased.
Growing older my passion for wildlife spilled over into my
love for film making, and after graduating from the
Tshwane University of Technology’s Film School I pursued a
career in wildlife film making working for a company called Aqua Vision
that produced TV documentaries for channels like Discovery, National Geographic
and Animal Planet. In 2002 I moved back to the farm in Tzaneen where I grew up
to help run the family’s forestry and sawmill business and a few months later
started my own Production company called ProAfrica TV that specialise in
remote destination film projects.
I became involved with SanWild in 2013, helping the sanctuary create a marketing
campaign and television commercial for their Rhino Conservation project.
My involvement grew and I was asked to join the board of Trustees in 2014.
As a board member my aim is to help the sanctuary raise the necessary funds to continue their work well into the future. Conservation is an act that starts with you, collectively our small acts have the potential to change the World.
I got involved in wildlife activism way back in 1999 during the Tuli Elephant saga
when I was involved with the Wildlife Action Group.At the time 30 young elephants
were forcefully removed from their mothers and herds by a wildlife trader called
If you would like to know more about the abuse of these unfortunate
young elephants, please click on the following links:
I met Louise during this time and have been
involved with SanWild as a Trustee ever since.
Although I am no longer as involved in Wildlife
Activism, I continue to serve as a Trustee and
I am also working with Golden Retriever Rescue
in rehoming Goldies in need.
I also have a business called Tailor Made Beds,
where we manufacture dog beds, special treats
and many more things doggy! Join us on Facebook
I was born in a small town called Vredendal in
South Africa's Cape Province.
I now live in Cape Town with a wonderful
husband, Pieter that shares my
passion for website design.
We have the most amazing little girl called
Kiera. In addition to being the
webmaster for SanWild, I am also one of
the Trustees. and serve as the Reservations
Officer for our Bukisa Private Bush Camp.
All the proceeds of this stylish camp is
used to fund SanWild's work.