With a love for Africa
Simon Reeve in Africa. Picture: Supplied

He may be a sought-after TV star who appears on a slew of Seven shows but, despite his rising profile, Simon Reeve's heart will always be in Africa.

The Million Dollar Minute host, who also appears on Weekend Sunrise, It's Academic and The Force: Behind The Line, spent several years living in Botswana early on in his career and still regularly visits the continent in his downtime.

Now the WA-raised personality is bringing that passion closer to home as a newly-minted ambassador for the Perth-based Painted Dog Conservation Inc, which is helping to save the last wild dogs in Africa.

Reeve will host a dinner at Perth Zoo tonight, where he plans to recount his experiences in Botswana and spread the word on the plight of the dogs.

"They are the most endangered predator in Africa and I certainly love them," Reeve explained to Access All Areas.

"They are unloved in lots of parts in Africa but they are a most amazing creature in terms of their behaviour.

"I think humans and dog-lovers in Australia can relate to these creatures as well.

"We were able to spend a lot of time in the bush filming them because there were big packs of them (in northern Botswana)."

Painted dog. Picture: Supplied

Though his TV career is only going from strength to strength, Reeve looks forward to the day he can pack up his home on the Gold Coast hinterland and move to Africa for an extended period of time with his wife Linda.

"I dream of winning Lotto one day and having a small camp over there myself. It is unlikely to happen but I would love to have a little base over there," he said, adding he would first need to wait for his teenage children Stella and Sam to leave the den.

But until that moment comes, Reeve is simply grateful for the chance to talk about what he calls his greatest passion in life, Africa, and encourage other stars to get behind causes they believe in.

"If you have causes that you are passionate about it is critical if you have a profile to become involved in this kind of thing," he said.

"Your message can reach more people and it just so happens that, for me with Million Dollar Minute, my profile is at a place where it hadn't been before. It's a very good time to step in and say 'What can I do to help?'"

Tickets are still available for Simon Reeve’s talk tonight at Perth Zoo. Phone 9455 6073.

The West Australian

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