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Session6 01 Ruth_Spencer


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Presentation made at the Sustainable Tourism in Small Island Developing States conference, 23-24 November 2017, Seychelles. A partnership of the Seychelles Sustainable Tourism Foundation, IUCN WCPA Tourism and Protected Areas Specialist Group, University of Seychelles, Paris Tourism Sorbonne (IREST), and Global Sustainable Tourism Council.

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Session6 01 Ruth_Spencer

  1. 1. Community Based Tourism Initiatives Das Bild kann nicht angezeigt werden. Ruth Spencer National Coordinator- GEF/SGP Antigua
  2. 2. MOA’s are being signed with local governments and regional agencies to move the process forward The national Reservoir Restoration Initiative
  3. 3. In the 6 communities where reservoirs were built in the 1800’s, the local community people came together to discuss their vulnerabilities. The ongoing 3 yr. drought and the impacts both negative and the positives were shared. The negatives included the cracking of the soil, mosquito and new diseases appearing, dangers to children’s education with the large amount of school closures, seniors at risk, health and cleanliness deterioration, persons have to walk to neighboring villages to get water and sometimes when they get there, there is no water, plant and animal life affected with them dying and the multiple and increased tasks on women. For the communities going forward-restoration of the reservoirs was key and steps included identifying and building partnerships with key persons in the private sectors who were born in the community, and government department to get the work done- clearing of roots around the reservoir, rebuilding the rusted roof covers, cleaning the inside, storing the water inside making it available for plant and other uses. This process which brought people together demonstrates local collective actions and solutions to adapt to the drought. This process encourages local participation, builds local ownership and buying and has principles of gender equality and mainstreaming- elders providing local knowledge, children and youth involvement, men coming together to carry out key roles. These support our local biodiversity, builds resilience and demonstrates coping skills needed for climate change adaptation and through strong partnerships enables these actions to be build into national strategy policies and actions. Our groups now sit on national committees at the Department of the Environment headed by a Champion-home of the GEF Focal Points, Accredited entity for AF and NDA for the GCF. Vulnerable Risk Assessments, through the GEF/SGP
  4. 4. The drought brought the community together. Through sharing they assessed the situation, looked at all the alternatives and identified workable solution. This has led to the community mapping their resources and using these findings of their assets for business as a village . The development of 4 community sites for these initiatives have brought out the best of people. They have been legally registered with the IP office through the MEPA Trust providing the in-kind support of US1200.00 per registration. Since 2015-6 such registrations have been completed with a waiting list of 12 new groups. The ministry of Tourism through it Sustainable Tourism Dept. has set up a multispectral working committee to provide capacity building and empowerment. National exhibitions, workshops and fairs are been done with groups sharing videos and presentations on cross cutting community initiatives egg ABS Nagoya protocol, Linking heritage and culture to Biodiversity, Article 8j, climate change adaptation, NDC’s and NAPS. In addition this has been a major start for community tourism initiatives where community assets are built into the tours to historical churches, nature trails, local cuisine and local product development of arts and craft. Communities are dreaming big. In communities, initiatives are springing up demonstrating communities coming together to engage and find solutions to local issues. Local knowledge is being recognized, valued and shared and being integrated into our local policy docs providing much value to national development. Findings-Turn challenges into opportunities
  5. 5. Enables the Country to meet key Biodiversity Targets Provides opportunities for best practices and knowledge sharing platforms Gives opportunities for advocacy and community empowering brining visibility to local community actions
  6. 6. Local actions are meeting global targets with group empowered. The STI is providing support and linking these with Royal Caribbean cruise ship visits. Private sector engagements taking place new partnerships being built with community having big dreams.
  7. 7. • Through our affiliation with the Caribbean Biodiversity Fund and Antigua and Barbuda being a director on the Board, with interest from our endowment, we will soon be able to send out Calls for proposals to support local and community groups to support these sustainable tourism initiatives and upscale them. • Through the NGO SIRF Fund window-15% of all donor funds to the government of Antigua and Barbuda will be channeled in grants to local community groups and 5% in loans to the private sector. • The GEF/SGP provides technical and financial assistance to local community and church group very active in initiatives that lead to training, their empowerment through capacity building along all the GEF Focal Area with, gender mainstreamed leading to the education and public awareness of the people. GEF/Small Grants Program Marine Ecosystems Protected Areas(MEPA) Trust Sustainable Island Resource Financing(SIRF) Fund embedded in EPMB of 2015