About Us

Whale Coast Conservation (WCC) is a registered NPO that has been working to protect the spectacular natural environment in the Overberg region of South Africa for over 20 years. This is an area encompassing marine, coastal, lowland and mountainous regions. It is in the heartland of the fynbos biome of the Cape Floral Kingdom and is a biodiversity hotspot.

Ironically, its natural beauty is the main cause of its extreme vulnerability. The more people who are attracted to the area to visit and settle, the greater the detrimental impact on various facets of environmental sustainability.
WCC has three main (inter-related) focus areas, namely:
1. EcoLearn:

We run various information-based programmes for both children and adults, aimed at improving their knowledge of and exposure to our natural environment. These are all science-based and include:

  • Supplementing the school environmental syllabi through holding expos at schools in the area which give concentrated information on specific topics
  • Running holiday programmes in nature, including sleep-over camps
  • Hosting adventures in nature where children and adults are able to enjoy hands-on experiential learning on specific topics and natural phenomena
  • Offering monthly talks on specific topics by specialist speakers
  • Writing a weekly column in a popular local newspaper on topics of environmental interest
  • Writing and publishing books on the environment for adults and children
  • Running citizen-science based projects such as rescuing and rehoming Cape Dwarf Chameleons endangered by developments, and generating base-line data on the cryptic Drewes Moss Frog.

2. EcoWatch:

The Overberg area is subject to intense development pressure with environmental consequences. 
WCC scans the media for development proposals put out for public participation, scrutinises these for compliance with environmental legislation and processes, and prepares and submits comments accordingly. An example of this work is our comments on the various phases of the environmental impact
assessment of the proposed CBD bypass road for Hermanus. 
We also identify areas of concern such as the status and condition of the estuaries in the area – including the rivers that feed them – and develop multi-discipline and multi-player approaches aimed at workable solutions. These are put to the test in project-based approaches, such as the rehabilitation of the Mill Stream in Stanford.

3. EcoProtect:

WCC is housed in premises on the privately-owned Whale Coast Nature Reserve (WCNR). WCNR encompasses diverse habitats from marine to mountain, all in need of restoration. It is bordered by urban and agricultural areas and bisected by a provincial road.

Activities on the reserve provide opportunities for WCC to expose people to pressing environmental issues such as alien invasive vegetation, the urban/wild interface, the impact of marine poaching and litter, and the impact on wildlife and biodiversity of urban development.
Through this approach participants are also exposed to the healing power of the natural environment. Physical participation in habitat restoration and the protection of wild spaces and their biodiversity is a powerful counter to the negative pressures and stresses of modern life.
We need your support

As a registered NPO, donations above R500 are eligible for a tax relief certificate.