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Towards ranger resilience : a social work model to assist rangers in dealing with workplace challenges

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dc.contributor.advisor Sekudu, J. Mathekga, Henrietta Laurencia 2018-02-19T08:55:25Z 2018-02-19T08:55:25Z 2017-11
dc.identifier.citation Mathekga, Henrietta Laurencia (2017) Towards ranger resilience : a social work model to assist rangers in dealing with workplace challenges, University of South Africa, Pretoria, <>
dc.description.abstract Rangers, as vanguards of wildlife conservation, are constantly fighting off armed poachers. That makes their work stressful and dangerous. In spite of this, their needs are neglected and are not considered as the focus is on saving wildlife. Undoubtedly, the African continent is not spared from the unrelenting poaching menace that threatens to drive the world’s wildlife spicies into extinction. In response to this scourge, countries, in their quest to safeguard these species from extermination, have signed various treaties, continuously come up with different strategies and pledged their support to fight illegal wildlife trading. This study was conducted at Hluhluwe-iMfolozi Park (HIP) and Mkhuze Game Reserve, which are under the management of Ezemvelo KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) Wildlife Management. These parks have turned into a battlefield between poachers and rangers. The intrinsic case study approach which is explorative and interpretive in perspective was used to unravel and describe the experiences from the world view of rangers. A descriptive qualitative research design was used to gain insight from the rangers about their challenges and needs in the workplace. Furthermore, developmental research was used to design and develop a tailor- made technology – a ranger resilience-building model – to assist rangers to deal with their workplace challenges. Focus group discussions were conducted with a group of rangers, while individual semi-structured interviews were conducted with managers in order to solicit information from purposively selected sample of rangers and managers at HIP and Mkhuze game reserve, that assisted in the development of the model. Ethical considerations, which involve the informed consent of the participants, confidentiality and privacy, participants’ right to withdraw from the study and the management of information, were applied to ensure that the participants were protected from harm. The collected data was analysed by using codes and themes that best described the experiences of the rangers, and data verification was done before the process of model development. It was evident that rangers are faced with a variety of workplace challenges, such as poor quality of work life, unpleasant living conditions, coupled with poor amenities, inadequte wellness interventions, and the poor management and implementation of policies by the Human Resources (HR) Department. Nevertheless, teamwork and their cultural practices were positive aspects that promoted their coping capacities in dealing with their everyday challenges. en
dc.format.extent 1 online resource (xvii, 268 leaves) : color illustrations, color photographs
dc.language.iso en en
dc.subject.ddc 363.6809684
dc.subject.lcsh KZN Wildlife -- Officials and employees -- Case studies
dc.subject.lcsh Park rangers -- South Africa -- KwaZulu Natal -- Case studies
dc.subject.lcsh Park rangers -- Employment -- South Africa -- KwaZulu Natal -- Case studies
dc.subject.lcsh Game wardens -- South Africa -- KwaZulu Natal -- Case studies
dc.subject.lcsh National parks and reserves -- South Africa -- KwaZulu Natal -- Management -- Case studies
dc.subject.lcsh Poaching -- South Africa -- KwaZulu Natal -- Prevention -- Case studies
dc.title Towards ranger resilience : a social work model to assist rangers in dealing with workplace challenges en
dc.type Thesis en
dc.description.department Social Work D. Phil. (Social Work)

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