Lihle Mbokazi

 

Lihle is an environmentalist, conservationist and activist. In 2005 she was the first black female to graduate from the Wilderness Leadership School as a Wilderness Guide. From an early age she fell in love with nature and as an adult she volunteered with environmental organisations such as Earth Life Africa, Eco Peace and the Wilderness Action Group.

In 2008 Lihle found her true calling in combining her counselling skills with her guiding skills when taking tours for the Wilderness Foundation for vulnerable and disadvantaged youth, using the healing power of nature to help them. She is the co-founder of Fezufunda Eco Environmental Youth Development Centre in KeiMouth, Eastern Cape.

Lihle has worked for the EarthLore Foundation as a Community Animator, running community dialogues with the community of Fuleni and Somkhele in the Northern Zululand. The Dialogues are aimed at reviving traditional knowledge, Indigenous Seeds and Secret Sites with the Elders.

In 2012, she was invited to join the Tracks of Giant expedition where she undertook a six month coast-to-coast journey across southern African countries linking major conservation areas. Following historical elephant migration paths, the entire 5000km journey was undertaken by foot, mountain bikes and kayak. The aim of the expedition was to rekindle the rapidly declining indigenous knowledge base of human – animal interface, and indigenous solutions to conservation challenges and issues.

In October 2013, Lihle attended one of the biggest environment congresses in the world, the WORLD WILDERNESS CONGRESS (WILD 10) in Spain – Salamanca. Lihle presented her Experiential Education work and Tracks of Giants Expedition experience at different seminars and plenary sessions. This event led to her being asked to take part in a documentary film about young underprivileged women being taken into the Wilderness for the first time. As their mentor, counsellor and wilderness guide, Lihle was perfect for the film. Sisters of the Wilderness was released in 2018 and is a multi-award winning social impact feature-length documentary. The film aims to re-connect people with the wilderness, raise awareness about the value of nature to our well-being and help the efforts to save the iMfolozi wilderness from the threat of unsustainable mining and illegal hunting of its rhinos. Exactly like Lihle herself.
Lihle is currently studying Counselling Psychology through UNISA.