PLEASE NOTE: Local Guide does not refer to a local region (area). The category Local Guide was introduced to enable predominantly illiterate Nature guides to gain a qualification and register to work legally at this level of guiding. These learners would possibly have difficulty being theoretically assessed for the FGASA Level 1 qualification.
At this level the guide:
- Is operating as a nature guide in a restricted or limited geographical environment. This usually refers to a particular Game or Nature reserve, National Park, Botanical garden, Bird Sanctuary, etc.
- Has the basic knowledge considered essential to register and operate legally as a Local Nature Guide.
- Has been declared competent against the requirements of the FGASA local Nature Guide practical assessment.
- Has a valid, up-to-date recognised First Aid Certificate.
- Is registered with NDT (National Dept of Tourism) as a legally qualified Nature Site Guide.
How do I get a FGASA Local Guide Qualification?
- Once you have become a member with FGASA you can apply for a FGASA Local guide practical assessment. (There is no theory examination for the Local guide qualification). If you can read or write it is suggested that you apply for the FGASA Level 1 qualification.
- The practical assessment for the Local guide qualification is carried out by a registered FGASA assessor in a guiding area of your choice. You will need to take the assessor on a guided nature experience in a limited geographical area (with or without paying clients), preferably with clients.
- The practical assessment will be explained to you in detail by your assessor in the pre-assessment brief. The assessor will make sure that you know what you will be assessed on in order that you can prepare yourself for this assessment.
- (Payment for your practical assessment is done directly to the assessor and does not come via the FGASA office.
- Once you have been declared competent for the practical assessment you will have attained the FGASA Local Nature Guide Qualification.
The Local Guide learners will go through a practical assessment, during which time they will be required to prove competence on general guiding skills, basic astronomy, local history, weather and climate, ecology, plants and animals (i.e. birds, mammals, reptiles, etc) and signs of the bush in their specific area of operation.
The guide achieving this qualification will be able to identify the major living and non-living features of the natural environment in which s/he operates and interpret them at a level based mainly on observation.
No literacy skills are required, but the guide needs to be able to communicate in English.
The practical assessment for this qualification is based on the NQF2 Nature Site Guide skills programme which includes two compulsory unit standards:
1. Create and Conduct a Guided Experience for Customers (8478)
The learner who achieves this unit standard will be able to create and conduct a guided tourist experience in a specific local site.
On achievement of this unit standard the learner will understand and be able to:
- Establish the needs, limitations and expectations of tourists.
- Identify and assess locally accessible heritage and natural life resources and plan a guided experience accordingly.
- Provide informed and entertaining commentary.
- Apply professional ethics with respect to the site environment.
- Ensure the health and safety of tourists on the guided experience.
2. Conduct a guided nature experience in a limited geographical area (8440)
On achievement of this certificate the learner will understand and be able to:
- Identify prominent plants and animals.
- Demonstrate an understanding of basic animal behavioural patterns and ecological principles.
- Identify and interpret obvious signs and sounds.
- Point out and explain evidence of human habitation and briefly relate cultural history.
- Point out the most prominent stars, planets and constellations.
- Demonstrate the ability to orientate him/herself in the natural environment.
- Explain the weather patterns of the area of guiding operation.