Welcome to the Gouritz Cluster Biosphere Reserve

On the southern edge of Africa lies a place all humans can call “home” – the place where almost 200 000 years ago our earliest modern ancestors began their journey across Africa and the world. This place is located in the heart of the Gouritz Cluster Biosphere Reserve.

Our Vision

By the year 2020 the Gouritz Cluster Biosphere Reserve supports a system of sustainable living landscapes that is representative of the region’s biodiversity through the co-existence of all stakeholders.

Our Mission

We take ownership of the sustainable utilization of the unique biodiversity of the area by ensuring global recognition through partnerships, continuous awareness and responsible decision-making for the benefit of all people, now and in the future.

The above film, It’s Everybody’s Business, was initiated, written, produced and sponsored by Neil Curry, an international award-winning environmental film producer. Neil is also member of the GCBR.  The copyright of the 40-minute film belongs to Neil Curry but he has given the GCBR the right to use and distribute it in order to promote its objectives in the region, and to sell DVD copies to raise funds for its own purposes, without paying any royalties to him.   We wish to thank Neil for this generous gesture.  It has been brought to our attention that the report on our website in September last year, of the premiere of this film by the GCBR, neglected to mention the above facts.   We wish to apologise to Neil for these errors and omissions, and for any professional embarrassment that may have been caused to him as a result.  We also wish to thank the Table Mountain Fund (TMF), Hessequa Municipality and Assegaaybosch Ranch for funding the out-of-pocket expenses incurred by Neil while producing the film, as well as all those people who assisted with logistical arrangements and filming.   The vegetation of the Klein Karoo and the adjacent coastal plain area is unique. Approximately 4,500 species of plants that occur nowhere else on earth are found here, in three internationally recognised biodiversity hotspots – Fynbos, Succulent Karoo and Valley Thicket. This, along with the empty landscapes, the solitude and the silence, make this a very attractive area for tourists, especially those from the more crowded parts of the planet.  However, the Klein Karoo is also an area that is water stressed. Rainfall is naturally low but degradation within water catchments and along the rivers has exacerbated the situation. Therefore in 2011 the Gouritz Cluster Biosphere Reserve was established. It’s a community-based initiative that aims to protect and restore the natural environment of the Klein Karoo, while at the same time encouraging the continued healthy growth of the local economy. This film sets out to tell this story.  We encourage you to purchase a copy of this outstanding DVD and show it to your family, friends and associates. Order your copy now for only R100.00 from the GCBR Secretary at  mary.rolbaken@gmail.com

Article submitted by Dick Carr