Monday, September 3, 2007
World Tourism Day to focus on women’s role
By: Clement Atagra & Samuel Gyasi
THIS year’s World Tourism Day, slated for September 27 will focus on women, and the economic benefits, as well as the independence that the tourism industry affords women.
It will be under the theme “Tourism Opens doors for Women” and is designated by the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) to highlight the fact that the organisation’s record shows that more women and young people are employed in the tourism sector than in most industries.
At a press conference in Accra yesterday to launch the day, Deputy Minister of Tourism and Diasporan Relations, Kofi Osei Ameyaw, said the main purpose for the commemoration of the World Tourism Day is to create awareness among the international community of the importance of tourism and its socio-electoral, political and economic values.
He said celebration of the day reflects the contribution of tourism wealth creation and poverty reduction in the community and the national economy.
“Furthermore, the event would serve as a platform to show case among others, women’s achievements in tourism sector,” he added.
To mark the day, a series of programmes and activities have been lined up which include media awareness for the general public, domestic sight seeing, tours to tourist sites in the regions as well as bazaars in the regions.
Additionally a three-day national exhibition with participation of women groups, institutions and stakeholders in tourism and the hospitality services, arts and the crafts and fashion industry.
The Minister called for a concerted effort to pool resources of all stakeholders and the public together to make tourism a viable tool for wealth creation, poverty reduction and environmental conservation on a sustainable manner.
He said tourism has over the years demonstrated its ability to contribute immensely towards national economic development, especially in the areas of employment generation, wealth creation and poverty reduction at the national level and within the communities.
He said the theme for this year’s celebration was so important because available records show that 44 per cent of women are employed directly or indirectly in the tourism sector.
Mr. Osei Ameyaw indicated by providing economic benefits and independence to women, it would go a long way to support child development and break the poverty cycle.
The Deputy Minister appealed to the media to help project the image of the country to contribute towards the tourism potential of the country.
The media, he noted sometimes do not portray the country in good light and so the international media takes it up and it dents the country’s image in the international community.
“The media should tell the truth but the ultimate good of the country should take precedence,” he emphasized.
The Ghanaian Times - Monday, September 3, 2007 Page: 18