BTO shortlisted for Tomorrow awards - Desert and Delta Safari eye Peoples Awards

IMG 0530The Botswana Tourism Organization(BTO) has been shortlisted for the 2017 Tourism for Tomorrow Awards by the prestigious World Travel and Tourism Council(WTTC), in the destination category, in recognition of Botswana's efforts in sustainable tourism development.

Desert and Delta Safaris which is a Botswana based operator, has also been shortlisted as a finalist in the PEOPLE category.

"The Tourism for tomorrow awards recognize the achievements by Tourism organizations and destinations in developing sustainable tourism practices in the fields of environment responsibility, cultural heritage and in creating social and economic benefits to local people and communities who play a critical role in the success of Tourism within their destination," said Tshekedi Khama, Minister of Environment, Wildlife and Tourism (MEWT) at a press briefing at Grand Palm International Convention Centre Tuesday.

He said, "As the Minister responsible for Tourism I am pleased about these nominations, as they demonstrate continued commitment by Government towards sustainable utilization of resources and improvement of the lives of the people of Botswana."

The Destination Award for which Botswana has been shortlisted is about the places where tourism takes place. The award recognizes a region, state, city, town or national park that is working to create the greatest sustainability thorough its Travel and Tourism sector.

Botswana Tourism Organization(BTO) was shortlisted alongside City of Bydgoszcz, Northern Poland and Pallas-Yllastuntari Parks Wildlife, Finland. Botswana shared some of the initiatives taken to promote sustainability in tourism development and community beneficiation like Engagement of the Local Authority and Community Leader on Community Based Natural resource Management, Department of Forestry and Range Resources strategic environmental assessment for forest reserves, and efforts to combat poaching and decongestion.

The People Award is open to any organization dedicated to improving career opportunities for people within the Travel and Tourism sector. The criteria includes exceptional human resource management, policies for developing people which are embedded across the organization and support for local employment.

"As a 100% Botswana owned company, Desert and Delta Safaris firmly believes its people are at the core of our business and play a pivotal; role in the businesses ongoing success. At the same time, Desert and Delta Safaris understands the impact we as an organization have on our staff members, their families and the communities where they are from," said Rodney Gerrard, Managing Director of Desert and Delta Safaris.

He said, "Desert and Delta Safaris recognized that the vast majority of managers running Botswana's safari camps were foreigners temporarily working in the country on work permits. In an effort to shift this balance we created a local citizen management training program in early 2000 which aimed to further the skills of local citizens, giving them the opportunity to seek a career in a management position. At the start of the program, we set out to become 100% citizen managed in our camps by the end of 2014. Due to the success of the program and those enrolled in it, we achieved this goal in 2013."


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