IIPT to Stage Community Tourism Workshop as part of World Symposium in South Africa 2015

Mandeville, Manchester  (September 13, 2014).  International Institute for Peace through Tourism (IIPT) is a not for profit organization founded by Louis D’Amore, President, it fosters initiatives in the world’s largest industry, travel and tourism. The organization contributes to international understanding and cooperation, improved environmental quality, heritage preservation, poverty reduction and a more peaceful and sustainable world.

Jamaica’s renowned community Tourism pioneer, Mrs. Diana McIntyre-Pike, OD, has been invited to conduct an All-day Workshop on Community Tourism at the  IIPT World Symposium in the Municipality of Ekurhuleni (City of Peace), South Africa.  The February 2015 Symposium will feature the Countrystyle Community Tourism Network/Villages as Businesses programme together with the IIPT/SKAL Caribbean Peace Villages programme.

The theme of the Symposium, IIPT’s sixth global summit and 16th international conference, is “Cultivating Sustainable and Peaceful Communities and Nations through Tourism, Culture and Sports.”  The aim is to identify strategies and best practices for employing tourism, culture and sports to cultivate productive, sustainable, peaceful and welcoming communities and to aid in reconciliation, healing and socio-economic re-development in countries that have experienced conflict.

Endorsed by Archbishop Desmond Tutu, the Symposium honors the legacies of Nelson Mandela, Mahatma Gandhi, and Martin Luther King, Jr. and commemorates the 50th Anniversary of the African Union, 20 years of South African democracy and the 50th Anniversary of Civil Rights legislation in the United States.  Louis D’Amore says the intent will be to harness the Symposium and these legacies and milestones to build bridges of tourism, friendship and peace between South Africa, India and the United States – and other regions of the world.

Symposium Host Partners are South Africa Tourism, Gauteng Tourism, the Metropolitan Municipalities of Ekurhuleni and Johannesburg and South African Airways.  Symposium partners include the UN World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), Africa Travel Association (ATA), Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA), SKAL International and International Coalition of Tourism Partners (ICTP).

The meeting will be highly interactive, with international experts in community development, community tourism, sports, culture and peace engaging delegates in the exchange of experiences and ideas.  IIPT has also invited African Ministers of Tourism and selected Ministers from European, Asian and South American countries that have experienced conflict to participate and share their insights and suggestions.

IIPT enjoys what President D’Amore describes as a “special relationship with Jamaica and the Caribbean as a result of Mrs. McIntyre-Pike’s leadership.”  IIPT recognized the work of Countrystyle Community Tourism Network (CCTN) many years ago, naming it the headquarters of IIPT’s first international chapter and branding Jamaica “Home of Community Tourism.”   It has also endorsed CCTN’s Villages As Businesses (VAB) programme.  Interest in CCTN’s approach and achievements led to a 2012 study tour to Jamaica by representatives of the South African tourism industry and, in turn, to IIPT’s engagement with South Africa.

With that context and the high visibility and lofty objectives of the Symposium in mind, Mrs. McIntyre-Pike sees attendance as an important opportunity for government, private sector and community interests in Jamaica to strengthen ties with South African counterparts.   She hopes to be accompanied by a delegation that includes representatives of CCTN’s management and advisory teams, CCTN member communities, the Ministry of Tourism and the Jamaica Tourist Board.

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