The World Responsible Tourism Awards has announced the launch of the African Responsible Tourism Awards in partnership with World Travel Market Africa (WTM-Africa) and the International Centre for Responsible Tourism South Africa (ICRT-SA). Winners of the inaugural African Responsible Tourism Awards, the regional leg of the World Responsible Tourism Awards, will be announced in Cape Town on 16 April 2015 as part of Africa Travel Week.
The World Responsible Tourism Awards is the leading global awards recognising achievement and innovation in responsible tourism. In 2014 the awards founded by Responsible Travel celebrated 11 years at WTM-London and in 2015 will continue to expand its partnership with World Travel Market portfolio events across the globe, including the African Responsible Tourism Awards 2015 at WTM Africa.
WESGRO – the tourism, trade and investment promotion agency for the Western Cape – is the main sponsor for the 2015 African Responsible Tourism Awards. According to Judy Lain, Chief Marketing Officer of Wesgro “Responsible Tourism is the guiding principle and priority for Wesgro and we are proud to be the sponsor of the inaugural African Responsible Tourism Awards at WTM-Africa. These awards will go a long way towards creating awareness of the importance of sustainability along with showcasing and rewarding those who are driving and excelling at it.”
Sugen Pillay, Commercial Director for Thebe Reed Exhibitions, organiser of WTM-Africa, says: “Responsible Tourism is a huge focus at WTM Africa this year and we are pleased to honour those who make an encouraging and continuous impact on society, the economy and the environment through the tourism industry.”
Justin Francis, Managing Director of Responsible Travel which founded and organises the annual World Responsible Tourism Awards says “Africa has always been well represented in the World Responsible Tourism Awards at WTM and I am thrilled that now it has its own awards scheme, dedicated to the African market. “
“Since founding the Awards 11 years ago, and running them over this time we know what a difference they can make in driving change within the tourism industry and in raising awareness of responsible tourism among businesses and consumers. We look forward to supporting the African Responsible Tourism Awards at WTM Africa, and are proud to welcome them to the Awards family.”
The inaugural African Responsible Tourism Awards have already generated significant participation across Africa, with the judging process already well underway. Heidi van der Watt of the ICRT South Africa comments “Nominations for the African Responsible Tourism Awards far outstripped our expectations. A full 112 nominations from 16 countries, truly covering Africa from north-south and east-west were received. Thanks you to our partners on the continent that helped us to get the word out and the nominations streaming in.”
As part of the World Responsible Tourism Awards family, the judging process for the African Responsible Tourism Awards is chaired by Harold Goodwin, Professor of Responsible Tourism at Manchester Metropolitan University, Director of the International Centre for Responsible Tourism and Chair of the main World Responsible Tourism Awards judging panel since its inception.
For more on the Responsible Tourism Awards In Africa, click here.