KOCHI: When the state is initiating several responsible tourism programmes, two entrepreneurs are implementing a successful model of sustainable tourism. A group from the US, who visited few villages in Alappuzha recently, has provided financial assistance to Kudumbasree to buy sewing machines and clothes for a group of women in Thanneermukkam panchayat.
“As part of our RT initiative called Cherathukal, we took the US team to some units run by self-help groups, like those making sanitary napkins and chapatis, struggling to survive. Impressed by the success story of Kudumbashree empowering village women, the tourists offered financial assistance,” said Dax Gueizelar, promoter of Adventure Strokes, which facilitated the programme.
The firm has done similar RT initiatives under ‘Cherathukal’ in Thekkady and Chellanam here earlier. It promotes a sustainable model of village tourism through generating local employment opportunities, encourages women empowerment and rainwater harvesting.
“The panchayat and CDS (community development society) groups selected 20 beneficiaries and the machines were handed over at a function held on June 20,” said Dilip Kumar Vasudevan, another promoter. “The women can either work as a group or individually. We have already got orders for cloth bags and kurtis from Thekkady and Ernakulam. They will be divided into three groups and their operations will be monitored for the initial two or three months.”
He said operators in the tourism sector should offer something new to the holidaymakers than just sightseeing and boating. They can take a constructive role in sustainable tourism by acting as a bridge between women’s self-help groups and tourism sector. The firm is now planning to extend the programme to other villages with the support of civic authorities and CDS groups....