JayJay D. Segbefia, NAV.: Towards My 400th Expedition Milestone

It all started in 1999. I was introduced to the world of the great Outdoors in Accra Academy, Ghana’s best senior high school. The club that opened that great world to me was the Accra Academy unit of the Duke of Edinburgh International Award Association. Hiking expeditions was one of the prerequisites towards the award of Bronze, Silver and Gold medals in the participation of that youth development programme. Consequently, my first expedition happened November 1-3, 1999.

Nothing has remained the same ever since. Everything else I have done with my life after that first expedition has led me deeper and deeper into the jungle. I read a bit of Law so I could think through policy that saves the environment and safeguards ecosystems and biodiversity in the jungles I explore with my clients. I read Communication Studies and trained as a journalist so I could better communicate the enormous benefits of stepping into the outdoors and pushing people beyond their limits of personal achievement. My ecological education happened so that I could devise ways to provide economic incentives to local communities to halt the process of environmental degradation so my jungles could remain intact. In short, the jungle is my raison d’être!

As I near my 16th expedition year and clog the milestone of my 400th African jungle expedition, I am amazed at all that my team and I have achieved, and especially where the jungle has taken us. Through jungle work, I have met the world’s most powerful man and been to places I otherwise might never have been in terms of world leadership and the corridors of global power. And, the achievements of being with the movers and shakers of global affairs is puny compared to the hope we have ignited in the eyes and hearts of some of Africa’s most deprived communities in remote regions. That we would brave the dangers of the jungle to discover their world and share with them scholarships for education and access to potable drinking water is a feat that has filled our beneficiary communities with wonder and humbled us into serving them more and more.

And so I lift up my eyes and gaze upon the eternal mountains the 400th time as an African Expedition Navigator. That I have led expeditions this many times does not make the adrenaline any less pumping, or the thrill of the smell of the woods any less exciting.

This is to the next 100th milestone, and, as is the BraveHearts Expeditions custom, we will never apologize for Greatness!