Ground-up Geotourism for Grenada

Ground-up Geotourism for Grenada

Grenada
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

PIA has formulated the following a development strategy to enhance Grenada’s socio-economic development through stakeholder ownership and management of their natural assets, an amalgamation of concepts as the way forward:
• The adoption of Geotourism as a CSR strategy
• Social marketing media to disseminate information, promote sustainable concepts and create buy-in
• Geotourism Community planning using the Geotourism strategy
• Implementation of the Geotourism Strategy by the ground-up participatory approach, directly as a
• The development of an eParticipatory community site to facilitate community planning, administration, dissemination of information, econsultancy, monitoring, evaluation and promotion, in that order.
• Solicit the support of volunteer/community tourism for the development of programs and communities

Building on the power of Geotourism is the in inclusion process, the rediscovery of sense of self and the dissemination of information, these elements of the strategy fuel national pride, local ownership, commerce and sustainability. We hope to present this from a new angle of the ground-up participatory approach to the strategy. We foundation principles “Knowledge is Power” and that development built on the principle of ‘For People, by People and with People” is the essence of sustainability.

Your idea
This will be the address used to plot your entry on the map.
Street Address

PO Box 44

City

St. Georges

State/Province
Postal/Zip Code
Country
Year innovation began

2004

Geotourism Challenge Addressed by Entrant

Quality of benefit to the people of the desitination

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Indicate sector in which you principally work

Community Organization

Geographic location

Urban, Rural, Coast, Suburban, Mountain, Rainforest, Multiple locations.

Plot your innovation within the Mosaic of Solutions
Main barrier addressed

Corporate monolithic approach to tourism

Main insight addressed

Establish community incentives

Innovation
What is the goal of your innovation?

To foster the holistic socio-economical development of communities through stakeholder participation, asset management and empowerment.

How does your approach support or embody geotourism?

PIA embraces Geotourism as a catalyst for sustainable development, through tourism that sustains and enhances the holistic development of the destination’s; its ecology, heritage, culture and way of life of a community and its people. The strategy offers a rediscovery and reconnection of the country's assets, the identity of the people and instills pride of place. It is about new levels of relationships between the host community and the visitor, the community see itself through new eyes. Through visitor/community interaction, respective cultures are explored, ideas and information are exchanged and new alliances are made. PIA believes that Geotourism strategy will instigate and affect community ownership of development, sustainability of our natural resources and Fair Trade Tourism.

Describe your approach in detail. How is it innovative?

PIA has chosen the ground-up participatory approach to the development of a Geotourism strategy starting from the community's stakeholders. Ground up Geotourism can fuel the power of people, “For the People, By the People and With the People”, to collectively map their assets, needs and resources; brainstorm and vision their independent development empowering them towards their sustainable future. We realize that institutional ownership of development is often an inefficient in its delivery of effective solutions to community; community has an intimate relationship with the assets but lack an understanding of their potential and direction. Knowledge is power!
PIA believes that success of socio-economic development is based on the following:
• Ground-up participation & collaboration of stakeholders; including private sector, communities, Government and support organizations;
• Research, data collection and mapping of assets, resources, innovative, alternative, sustainable development concepts;
• Promotion and awareness Development for ethical practices such as Fair Trade, Geotourism, CRS, Alternative Energy and organic farming
• Effective use of ICT solution to affect community development, as a knowledge sharing tool, for marketing, planning, administration and enlightenment of governing policies & guidelines.

To achieve these goals we have adopted the following participatory strategies, management systems and approaches:
• Geotourism Strategy as a community participatory development strategy
• eParticipatory website support development as a support to transparent administration, monitoring and development
• Community/Volunteer tourism as support resource development and independent sustainability.
• Social Marketing media (radio & TV), public awareness, monitoring and promotion,
• CSR, the stewardship and support of the destination's identity, communities and their resources .

What types of partnerships or professional development would be most beneficial in spreading your innovation?

There are 4 major levels of partnerships. We find that partnership with community/stakeholders is the primary component in development. We seek partnerships with educational and interest institutions for the support of community development through knowledge sharing, as well as physical and financial support towards the development of projects. Partnerships with businesses on their CSR development, the stewardship and support of the destination's identity, communities and their resources governed by Geotourism principles and monitored by the community. We hope to develop partnerships with Social Media and publications for the awareness development, promotion of best practices and monitoring of developments.

Impact
In one sentence describe what kind of impact, change, or reform your approach is intended to achieve.

Enable communities to accept responsibilities, to explore possibilities & take action to improve their standard of living in a continuing and independent basis through transparency and accountability

Describe the degree of success of your approach to date. Clearly define how you measure quantitative and qualitative impact in terms of how your approach contributes to the sustainability or enhancement of local culture, environment, heritage, or aesthetics? How does your approach minimize negative impacts? 200 words or less

We have assisted in the development of sound sustainable development tourism success stories, Grenada Chocolate Factory, Belmont Estate and Bel Air Plantation. We have also advised community and local persons on the development of their product with varied outcomes. We have successfully raised the awareness for community tourism and volunteer tourism. Our recent advocacy on the Four Seasons development of property that which also housed the protected habitat of the endangered Grenada Dove, has just produced some results and we have enticed the developers to take the development a step further to protecting and enhancing the mangrove, marine park area as well as establish a community program and working with alternative energy. There are 15 developments on the island at present that have all expressed the desire to adopt the same strategy of stewarding the community and the assets of their local.

How does your program promote traveler enthusiasm, satisfaction, and engagement with the locale?

We offer an intimate view of Grenada. With over 450 species of flowering plants, 150 species of birds, including two endemic species, the Grenada Dove and Hook billed kite, and abundant marine life, such as leather back turtles. In fact the island of Carriacou is an Indian name meaning “Land surrounded by reefs.” Diving around Carriacou is well known for its unspoiled reefs. The islands offer significant biodiversity in a small area. The rich tapestry of history & culture that the islands inherited from the earliest settlers, the Amerindians; its earliest European settlers were also the French, English and a small period of the Dutch. You leave the islands taking home treasured stories and in depth experiences but you will have helped to sustained the resources of this unique paradise in a respectful manner.

In what ways are local residents actively involved in your innovation, including participation and community input? How has the community responded to or benefited from your approach?

We freely advise community information on sustainable concepts of development. We have already worked with communities on identifying their assets. Communities have already began to capitalize on their culture, heritage and environment as a asset in their tourism enterprises.

Describe how your innovation helps travelers and local residents better understand the value of the area’s cultural and natural heritage, and educates them on local environmental issues. How do you motivate them to act responsibly in their future travel decisions?

We have found that community is often not cognizant of the value & potential of their assets from the examples we have created that there are ways of sustaining their assets and the possibility of tourism supporting those effort, what they lack is the “How to”. One of the reasons that we use volunteer tourism is that when they work with community the community sees their assets through new eyes. Often there is more information and studies on our assets available outside of our country than what is accessible on island.. We encourage tourism to share their knowledge of possibilities

Sustainability
Is your initiative financially and organizationally sustainable? If not, what is required to make it so? What is the potential demand for your innovation?

We have written for funding but as yet no success and we are at present strengthening our capacity. We do however have a sound financial strategy. PIA is in need of volunteer proposal writer to assist with the development of a business proposal and to assist with administrative framework.

How is your initiative currently financed? If available, provide information on your finances and organization that could help others. Please list: Annual budget, annual revenue generated, size of part-time, full-time and volunteer staff.

PIA has been operating out of the home/office of the Richard & Denyse Ogilvie and their kids, aided by Richard’s 1500.00EC or $500.00US per month salary. PIA has made a conscious effort to cut down on overheads and many of our administrative tools e.g. our website, has been the contribution of individuals and partners. To us we have achieved more that we have ever have in our salaried capacity with in institutions. We hope to demonstrate the cost effectiveness of development. We have calculated that our expected annual operation cost per year to be 150,000.00US per year. At present at present full time is administrative work is volunteered by Denyse Ogilvie, part-time volunteer advisers are seven in all.

What is your plan to expand your approach? Please indicate where/how you would like to grow or enhance your innovation, or have others do so.

At present we are formulating a program for CSR Geotourism Strategy will encourage the developer of resorts to steward their communities and the varied assets of their local. We see that the development of the volunteer tourism market as a mechanism for sustainability and are in the process of formulating the market here. Both of these strategies are integral components to our ground up strategy.

What are the main barriers you encounter in managing, implementing, or replicating your innovation? What barriers keep your program from having greater impact?

Our main barriers have been Government readiness due to lack of capacity and financial constraints. We have been also awaiting the development of a win-win outcome on the Four Seasons development in Grenada and the protection of the Grenada Dove who’s habitat is on their proposed site, this has just come about and we continue to encourage them to steward the Community, Marine Parks, Mangrove and historical assets on their site. It is our hope that the Four Seasons development can be the flag ship of CSR Geotourism and that Bill Gates who is a large shareholder in Four Seasons might champion the adoption of Geotourism as a strategy for CSR development by the tourism industry.

The Story
What is the origin of your innovation? Tell your story.

In 2002 PIA proposed the development of an online tool that would be an encyclopedia of resources of history, culture, environment, organizational bodies and efforts, to a quasi Government agency who adopted it as the Spatial Cultural Map. In September 7th 2004 Hurricane Ivan devastated Grenada. It was within the time of the recovery I worked with communities in exploring possible strategies of recovery. In passing around a community volunteer tourism project for funding for the community of Marquis; I was introduced to NGS,CSD and Geotourism, it was everything we envisaged with the Spatial Cultural Map and more. I carried the idea forth to international funding agencies the stationed here, local NGOs and Government. Within the position at a Government agency we created a model of a mapping exercise with volunteer assistance. July 2006 frustrated by our lack of capacity and understanding the capacity of the volunteer tourism concept we ventured out to create a volunteer tourism market with the guidelines and principles of Geotourism. I shared our plans with NGS,CSD and we agreed to work together on a proposal for Geotourism for Grenada.
In the dawn of 2007 the rebuild has taken its toll; that year’s budget reported government debt to be 121% of GDP in 2006 (109% on a net basis), up from 118% in both 2004 and 2005. The hurricane devastated Grenada, had started a downward spiral effect on the economy and the government of Grenada sort way of pulling us out of debt.
The issue of the sale of land to Four Seasons developers became public, Mt. Hartman site is protected habitat of the Grenada Dove, that is near extinction; the development as first presented encroached and divided the existing habitat of this shy bird. We have intervened as a solution orientated organization. Jonathan Tourtellot at our bequest made an unscheduled visit to Grenada in March 2007 to due to the short notice he was unable to meet with our leadership as we had hoped. He did however leave the following incentive of proposed assistance from NGS for both the developers and Government to come to a win-win for the developers and the Dove.
PIA realizes the short comings of institutional ownership of development. The developers have been open to discussion on sustainable development. We have found that private sector can be an efficient funding agent if we can present a structure that they can follow with participatory monitoring. At present we are working on a possible structure for CSR development in partnership with NGS, CSD

Please provide a personal bio. Note this may be used in Changemakers' marketing material.

Grenada has been my first real home; my love for my home has come out of my husband’s rediscovery and our introduction to his home. My experience is in private sector but my passion is my family, and love has a funny way of changing you outlook and values in life. Life’s has taught me that change is possible and that the will of people more than money is what pushed change. I am, what I call, the “Erin Brockovich of development”. Selflessness is the best self-preservation strategy taking care of the things around us will take care of us there is more strength in the collective effort.

Please write an overview of your project. This text will appear when people scroll over the icon for your entry on the Google map located on the competition homepage.

PIA has formulated the following a development strategy to enhance Grenada’s socio-economic development through stakeholder ownership and management of their natural assets, an amalgamation of concepts as the way forward:
• The adoption of Geotourism as a CSR strategy
• Social marketing media to disseminate information, promote sustainable concepts and create buy-in
• Geotourism Community planning using the Geotourism strategy
• Implementation of the Geotourism Strategy by the ground-up participatory approach, directly as a
• The development of an eParticipatory community site to facilitate community planning, administration, dissemination of information, econsultancy, monitoring, evaluation and promotion, in that order.
• Solicit the support of volunteer/community tourism for the development of programs and communities

Building on the power of Geotourism is the in inclusion process, the rediscovery of sense of self and the dissemination of information, these elements of the strategy fuel national pride, local ownership, commerce and sustainability. We hope to present this from a new angle of the ground-up participatory approach to the strategy. We foundation principles “Knowledge is Power” and that development built on the principle of ‘For People, by People and with People” is the essence of sustainability.