The Travelers’ Philanthropy Conference, held at Stanford University, April 12-15, exceeded expectations — in terms of the range of participants, quality of presentations and discussions, and the outcomes. Seventyseven people took part in the conference, including 23 from tour operators and ecolodges, 8 from other types of companies, 13 from NGOs, 8 from philanthropic foundations, 6 from academic institutions, and 2 from governmental and intergovernmental agencies. Attendees came from 12 countries: Australia, South Africa, Kenya, 6 in Latin America, England, Canada, and the United States. Not surprisingly, many TIES members were sponsors and participants.
The conference was designed to facilitate exchanges among the many stakeholders in the tourism industry worldwide. Participants provided advice and insights from a broad range of expertise and experience including how to identify needs, solicit contributions, and administer, strengthen, and promote social service and environmental stewardship projects. The conference included three panels exploring tour operators’, hotel properties’, and “big companies’” perspectives on Travelers’ Philanthropy. In addition, foundation program officers spoke about criteria for selecting community-based projects, and donors on why they give charitable contributions. Detailed info here : Valuations QLD
Travelers’ Philanthropy has been practiced by many operators in the travel and tourism sector for a number of years, but only received this name recently. Scores of companies are contributing millions of dollars — the exact figure isn’t known — to community and conservation projects around the world. Tourism is a top foreign exchange earner for an increasing number of poor countries. At the same time that globalization is on the rise, the percentage of gross domestic product that the United States gives to developing countries continues to decline.
Projects sponsored by tourism companies spanned the globe and included the READ program that builds libraries and provides microfunding for community-based income generating projects in Nepal (Myths and Mountains); Planeterra Foundation that supports community projects in Latin America (G.A.P. Adventures), Coral Cay Conservation that helps protect coral reefs and tropical forests in the Philippines, Malaysia, Honduras, Bahamas, and elsewhere; Intrepid Foundation that supports grassroots NGOs in Asia (Intrepid Travel), the Yasawas Community Foundation that provides health clinics, schools, and employment opportunities to Fiji islanders (Turtle Island Resort).