Shenton Safaris’ Family: Agata Passoni

There’s a starting point to every story, and it usually begins with a family. Here at Shenton Safaris we’re fortunate to have our company founder be involved in every single aspect of the camp life on the ground; Derek & Juliet Shenton oversee their extended family – to ensure that every guest experience is in tune to their ethos of safari-ing.

So who do you meet on the ground? Well, I thought we’d start sharing the stories of each of our Shenton Safaris’ Family members, from our chefs, to our guides, to our room attendants and waiters. Every member of our family makes up a crucial aspect of our safari; each member is fundamental in making sure that you have your unforgettable wildlife experiences and get close to what it means to have a Shenton’s Safari!

Where to start! Well, I thought I’d introduce myself. My name is Agata, I’ve been with Shenton Safaris since 2016, but my history with the company goes back to 1997. I started coming to Kaingo when I was 8 years old; our family was living in Lilongwe, and we had the incredible privilege of being just a drive away from this incredible oasis of natural beauty. I grew up addicted to safaris, my mother and father instilled a passion and love for the wilderness in me that’s flame still burns. After a childhood like this where every safari was a pleasure, I never imagined myself back here working. The universe had other plans for me, after studying oriental languages in Italy, and working in luxury hospitality and fashion in Venice, the deep craving for the bush swept over me like a thirst that was unquenchable. I had to get back!

This is the point where I give all credit to the universe, I quit my job to return back home, and sent Derek an email asking if he knew of anyone in the South Luangwa that was looking for a volunteer – I just wanted to be back out in this paradise. Unbeknownst to me, Derek was in search of a hostess, and my CV landed on his lap at the right time. I started my journey with Shenton Safaris as a hostess, moving into becoming their reservationist in a couple of months, then onto reservations and marketing, and now this year running front of house. I’ve been in every position available in camp, covering managers when they go on leave, from Mwamba to our incredible exec-chef, and I’ve loved every role that I’ve had the chance to fill!

How has it been? Well, I’m still here, and I can’t imagine my life without being a part of this extended Shenton Safaris’ Family. I get to live in paradise for 6 months of the year, and travel the world marketing the company for the other six months. I took that leap to the bush back in 2016, and there’s nowhere I’d rather be but here! As the days go on, I’ll be writing more of these “Shenton Safaris’ Family” blogs, so be sure to stay tuned to learn more of the background stories of our incredible little bush family!

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