sustainability

Training the trainers Jamaica Style

img_1476

With a mission to train 250 craft traders in Montego Bay we felt our best approach would be to train local trainers to undertake the delivery. In doing so the expertise would stay in Jamaica with the potential to allow replication in other resorts.

Travel Foundation’s work on this programme is extremely awesome. I think it’s a great opportunity for the craft traders to be involved in something that will help them to be much more aware. I think it will broaden their horizons, and they will be able to use the skills that they gain in their day to day work. I don’t think there’s anything that tops this programme right now based on what I’ve seen and experienced so far. I think the craft traders who apply what they learn here will do extremely well in their business. So hats off to a great programme Travel Foundation.

– Cavelle Gordon

An hour into the training we knew our strategy was the right one. Let’s just say Jamaicans’ do not have the same ‘reserve’ as us British! Their delivery is loud and powerful with an energy as strong as the imminent Hurricane Mathew about to hit the island. They train like preachers in a gospel church with joy echoed by the participants in the room. And of course this can be the only way to do it with a target audience of Mo Bay craft traders, used to communicating in the local patois with their characteristic brassy banter.img_1431

This was fun training at its best with our formidable team of six – Cavelle, Cheryl, Marlene, Maxine, Natalie and Shelley. They revealed how filling a jar with coins could reinforce the learnings and lowering a bamboo stick with the whole group can demonstrate the importance of team work.

With modules including knowing the customer, business skills and working as a team, the trainers are set to deliver the programme to the craft traders over the next six weeks – barring any hurricanes!

I honestly believe that this is a great programme and will definitely impact positively the craft traders to maximise their profits because all the information we’re giving to them is actually practical information that they can build on and improve themselves. By improving themselves they will also improve earnings for their family members. For me it was amazing, a really great experience. It has taught me so much more and I’ve been a trainer for 9 years and I thought I knew something about training but this training for craft traders has taught me so much more. I will take this information and skills I learnt here to better and perfect my craft. For learning to happen and to be effective you need to have trainers that engage you and that push you to make a change. And this is what happened in this training. I am extremely grateful for being here and for being given the opportunity to be a part of this training programme.

– Natalie Ellis

The last 3 days have been amazing; I have personally enjoyed the programme, drank it in. If you, yourself buy into it, then delivering it then becomes a little easier and I will say that I will put my best foot forward to do my part in the whole basis of what you [Travel Foundation] are trying to achieve.

– Cheryl Kelly

Our aims for the training are to enable the market traders to earn a living from tourism by increasing their income from sales and improving the experience for tourists.

Written by Julie Middleton, Head of Sustainable Practice Julie Middleton

Advertisements

Building consensus in Croatia

capture1

One of the characteristics of a holiday that can make the experience so rich and enjoyable is that it is made up of so many different factors – the accommodation we stay in, the food we eat, the places we go to, the attractions we see.

This can bring complicated challenges for those of us working towards more sustainable tourism, as these different aspects of the tourism product are often owned, provided by, or managed by different organisations across both the public and private sectors – such as hotels, tour operators, local councils, restaurants and bars.

As a result, many of our projects involve, and are reliant on, a diverse range of stakeholders and our new programme of work in Croatia is no different. Across two villages in Split-Dalmatia, we are supporting the different stakeholders involved in tourism to work together to improve the impacts of tourism on the local community and environment. In particular, we have been working to bring together organisations from the public and private sectors, including local tourism boards, hotels, small, local businesses and regional government bodies. 

Getting people in a room together to discuss an agreed set of topics may seem to be a quick and easy task, but it can often be one of the most time consuming and challenging parts of a project.

In Croatia, we have worked hard to resolve the barriers that were preventing these different organisations from working together and  we are happy to report that the ongoing workshops and meetings are enabling them to find a common vision for their destination. Ane Sindik, The Travel Foundation’s programme co-ordinator in Croatia said:

“We have come to the point where stakeholders have become more open and are able to solve problems together.  They understand that collaborative working can increase tourism income, improve customer satisfaction and ensure that tourism does not have a negative impact on the region.”

From now on, the stakeholders will be working jointly on a number of tourism development activities including cultural heritage valorisation, youth employment and sustainable excursion development projects.

By Thomas Armitt, Destination Programme OfficerTom Armitt

 

What sparked my interest in sustainable tourism

The weather was scorching and I’d spent the day cooped up in the backseat of a car bumping along dusty roads in Accra, the capital of Ghana, meeting project stakeholders.

All I wanted was to relax with a nice cold beer and take a refreshing shower. But I couldn’t – there wasn’t any water available at that time of the day.gardens irrigating efficiently

Water shortage was a big problem in Accra, leading to the authorities restricting access at certain times, and it was a problem made worse by the development of a new golf resort which used gallons of precious water each day to keep its greens, well, green!

It seemed so unfair to drive past acres of lush grass, closed off to all but visiting hotel guests and the wealthy elite, whilst parts of the city struggled to have enough water for daily life.

It was the first time I’d experienced first-hand the negative impacts that tourism could have on communities that often don’t have a say in what developments spring up around them, and who often don’t see any benefits trickle down.

This experience sparked my interest in making tourism more sustainable and developers more responsible for the destinations they work in. That’s one of the reasons I’m so excited to have recently joined the Travel Foundation and be working on projects that bring about real change in destinations.

During my first weeks in the job I’ve been inspired by stories about the lasting impact we’ve had around the world: providing access to tourism markets for local Turkish farmers, encouraging sustainable excursions around the islands of Cape Verde, and providing local women with the opportunity to sell natural honey products to hotels in Mexico.

These programmes don’t only benefit the local communities, but provide models for how sustainable tourism can be done – and these models can be replicated by the travel industry worldwide.

The enthusiasm and energy of the team both here and in destinations around the world is amazing, and I’ve been really impressed by the thorough, evidence-led approach taken with each programme. It’s great to see new opportunities on the horizon such as potential projects to reduce the carbon footprint of tourism in the Caribbean and Africa, and I can’t wait to get stuck in! Clare_web

– Clare Fussell, Destinations Programme Manager 

Best practice now common practice for 15 Fethiye hotels

taste of Fethiye logo300After five years support, we’re almost ready to stand back from the Taste of Fethiye project in Turkey. The project is now on the verge of being handed over to local organisations. FETAV (Fethiye Tourism, Education, Environment and Culture Promotion) have already taken over organisation of the Taste of Fethiye Craft Fairs, and we’re busy working on agreeing responsibilities that will be handed over to local organisations who will continue to run the Taste of Fethiye brand in future.

LD6H2217The wholesalers that were involved in the project from the beginning are still working with almost all the Taste of Fethiye farmers, which is hugely important to ensure future success. We also had a great increase in involvement from hotels last year, which had a great influence on production and sales.

 

Fifteen hotels are still purchasing Taste of Fethiye produce, which tells us after all these years of hard work, purchasing local fresh fruit and vegetables from Taste of Fethiye has become a part of their day-to-day business practice.

 

So, it seems that it IS possible to integrate small, local suppliers into the mainstream tourism supply chain. Myself and Vicky are currently working on an impact assessment report for the project, and I look forward to sharing all that stats with you soon.

SemsiProfileWritten by Semsi Toprak, Programme Co-ordinator, Fethiye (Turkey)

Read more about the Taste of Fethiye project.

What’SUP with our Blue Wave project?

DCIM100GOPROG0072677.

Semsi Toprak paddle boarding in the Fethiye-Gocek Special Environmental Protection Area

The Blue Wave Project takes place in the Fethiye-Gocek Special Environmental Protection Area located in southwest Turkish Mediterranean coast. A working group consisting of cross sector representation from all the stakeholders (marinas, bays, private boat operators, NGOs, local authorities) Chamber of Shipping, TURMEPA – environmental NGO, D-Marin- a private marina group and the Travel Foundation are responsible for delivering the project and co-ordinating activities. The project aims to improve the level of sustainable practices carried out within the sector and amongst tourists, creating a cleaner and more appealing tourism product.

DCIM100GOPROGOPR2963.

Around the coast there are around 40 bays or islands that visitors can enjoy. One of the main reasons why tourists visit is to enjoy the beautiful marine environment, with most tourists taking a least one boat trip during their stay. However, the increasing popularity of marine recreation threatens to destroy the very thing that supports the economy of the region – the environment.

Last week I went on a four day solo stand-up paddling (SUP) board tour around Fethiye-Gocek bays and Islands. This was the first time that a person was making a multi-day SUP excursion around that coast, and the idea was to spread the word about the Blue Wave Project to tourist boats and establishments on bays and islands. I paddled about 30 miles; talking to tourists, boat operators and restaurant owners on the way, while demonstrating one of the lowest impact ways of sea travel.

DCIM100GOPROG0112905.

People were mostly interested in how I was able to carry all I would need including the food that would last four days on a paddleboard. This is one of the ways to demonstrate how minimalist you should think while sailing or traveling with a motor boat. You are there with hundreds of other species sharing the same environment, and being solo and interacting with all that marine and land wildlife made me feel like a real outsider.

 

SemsiProfileWritten by Semsi Toprak, Programme coordinator, Fethiye

Read more about Blue Wave.

Florida sustainability conference gets a Taste of Fethiye

Taste of Fethiye Project coordinator Semsi Toprak Semsi Toprakrecently held a break-out session in the Ecotourism and Sustainable Tourism Conference North America (ESTCNA), the first major sustainable tourism conference following the adoption of the United Nations Sustainability Goals and the outcomes of COP 21 Climate Change negotiations.

The conference was organised by The International Ecotourism Society and hosted by the University of South Florida Patel College of Global Sustainability. The theme for this year’s conference was ‘Transforming Our World Through Sustainable Solutions’.

I can’t tell you how good it was to be able to speak about the project that far from home. Seeing the interest – and even surprise – on people’s faces was worth the trip.

Semsi’s session took place within the ‘Sustainable Food’ theme and was well attended by an international group consisting of tourism professionals, travel writers, private companies and academics.

It was amazing to see the audience’s interest. One question followed another, until at last we got a nod from the moderator to end the session. Once again I was very proud to be part of this unique project, which presents an ideal example for the tourism industry.

– Semsi Toprak, Project Coordinator

> Find out more about Taste of Fethiye

LD6H2217

Salad Days

Travel Foundation team visits The Severn Project

The team get a look at some of the packaged produce

The team get a look at some of the packaged produce

During the first week of September all the Travel Foundation’s destination programmes coordinators convened at our Bristol HQ – it’s always lovely to see them! One afternoon we took time out from our busy schedule to be inspired by the work of The Severn Project – a ‘Bristol born and bred’ social enterprise and Community Interest Company.

The organisation’s organic urban farm grows salad leaves on around 8.5 acres – giving a new purpose to previously disused land, and providing employment opportunities for local people recovering from drug and alcohol misuse, and those with a history of offending or poor mental health.

The result is fresh, fresh salad leaves which are supplied to local restaurants, alongside real social benefits for employees and the wider community.

IMG_4791

The TF team with Severn Project founder, Steve Glover (2nd from right)

With so many of our overseas programmes focusing on local supply chain and linking the tourism and agricultural industries, our extended team found the visit (and especially the chance to quiz founder Steve Glover) deeply insightful and inspiring. No doubt they’ll be taking some tips back to their respective corners of the globe to implement in existing and future programmes.

Founded in 2010, The Severn Project now supplies 80 customers in Bristol on a weekly basis and is currently in discussions with some well-known UK retailers – so watch out for their produce in a chiller cabinet near you soon!

Greener beaches to spread across the med…

The Chairman of The Cyprus Sustainable Tourism Initiative (CSTI), Philippos Drousiotis, was invited to present at the MITOMED final conference “Challenges and perspectives for Coastal and Maritime Tourism in Europe” which took place in Florence, Italy, on Tuesday the 12th of May, 2015.    MITOMED stands for ‘Models of Integrated Tourism in the Mediterranean’, is a transnational project co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund.

MITOMED_version 1_IY_page1_image1The CSTI is a key partner of the Travel Foundation in Cyprus. Below we hear more from Philippos…

“With partners from coastal regions across the med, it was a great opportunity to talk about the work being done in Cyprus, to share our learnings and hope that the benefits can be spread to other destinations.

Something that really seemed to strike a cord with attendees was the ‘Greening Cyprus Beaches’ project, and the MITOMED partners are interested in promoting the Greening Cyprus Beaches project by including it in the action plan of the project for sustainable management of maritime and coastal tourism.

It will be presented as a good example for the regeneration of the sun & sea product in the med area by having quality beaches. It’s great to see that the results of one of our projects can be applied to other destinations, and they can benefit too.”

Find out more about the Greener Beaches project here.

A ‘rubbish’ map

Cyprus Waste‘Waste mapping’ is something hotels can do to minimise waste, save money and plan for sustainable management of waste. It’s about identifying the sources, types and quantities of waste produced… and taking simple actions to reduce it.

During May the Travel Foundation delivered two interactive workshops to key employees of Louis Hotels in Protaras and Pafos. The staff were eager to implement the waste mapping tool, which they were quick to identify as important to their daily work. A group of ten people from each hotel were represented, including the hotel managers from all seven participating hotels.

The Cyprus Destination Partnership will be working closely with Louis Hotels throughout 2015 to support them in developing interventions to reduce waste at each of their hotel properties. The aim is to trial and improve the guide and tool on waste mapping, with insights, ideas and images from Louis Hotels, before introducing them more widely within the hotel industry in Cyprus.Chryso Demetriou - waste mapping

“The waste mapping project running in our hotel looks very interesting. It will help us to identify which department generates more waste, and find ways to reduce it. Also with this program we can give our suggestions and ideas for waste reduction and management.”

– Demetriou Chryso, Floor Supervisor, Louis Imperial Beach Hotel

The practical implementation to trial the tool will start in late May and end in October. During those months we will analyse the waste data, incorporate suggestions from the staff and create a practical and easy to use mapping tool.

Fethiye farmers step closer to a sustainable future

taste of Fethiye logo300Since 2010, our Taste of Fethiye project in Turkey has been working to increase the benefits farmers in gain from tourism, and encourage good farming practise.

Having successfully increased produce yields, the project looked to assist farmers with the sale of produce to hoteliers, and other businesses, through a wholesaler under the ‘Taste of Fethiye’ brand. Now in it’s final year of Travel Foundation funding, project stakeholders have significantly begun to step-up activities in preparation for ownership after 2015.

Having seen the value in fresh, local produce, the wholesaler (through which the ToF produce is sold) has produced its own marketing materials for ToF branded fruit and vegetables. This includes printed materials such as letterheads and purchase agreements, and new van livery that includes the ToF logo. This is a really positive step towards self-sufficiency.

Senay Coskun, owner of the wholesaler in Fethiye

Senay Coskun, owner of the wholesaler in Fethiye

Below we hear from Senay Coskun, owner of the wholesaler…

“We have been working with the Taste of Fethiye project for 4 years and we are very happy with the progress. After all these years we feel ourselves as a big family with farmers, project manager and hoteliers. We are receiving quality products from the farmers and delivering them to hotels as fresh as possible.

We see the increasing interest from the hoteliers too. Every year we are increasing our sales with new hotel agreements. As the company owner I always thought that we are very much lacking in marketing and communication.  With the help of Taste of Fethiye project we feel that we’ve improved our communication and marketing skills. With the story behind and successful improvements through the years, this project gives us the tremendous opportunity to communicate more with our customers.

LD6H2217

Becoming a runner up in UWTO Ulysses Awards was fascinating and we were very proud to play a part in that. We wanted to promote the Taste of Fethiye brand more because the interest towards the project is increasing very rapidly we wanted to stress our involvement. After all as a service provider, working with this unique project is helping us to grow our business.”

The ToF project has been working with 29 farmers throughout 6 villages, who are now supplying produce (via the wholesaler) to hotels and businesses throughout the Fethiye region. To read more on this project, click here.