Over 400 youth from all over Cebu province would converge at SM Seaside City Cebu on August 21 for the Cebu Youth 4 Tourism Summit themed “Wired and Free”.
Joselito “Boboi” Costas, Cebu Provincial Tourism officer, said the summit is intended for the youth to be more active in advancing sustainable tourism in Cebu.
“The youth are a fount of talent that if tapped properly would serve as catalyst and prime mover in effecting positive change. Recognizing this, the Cebu Provincial Tourism Office is reaching out to them through the ‘Cebu Youth 4 Tourism Summit’,” he said.
The summit participants are students from selected schools and youths endorsed by the different tourism offices of Cebu towns and component cities.
Discussions would focus on sustainable tourism, its contribution to the Sustainable Development Goals; its being a tool for development, especially that of Cebu’s countryside; and the impact of travel and tourism on society and environment.
“All through the discussions, participants are also expected to identify how they could contribute to sustainable tourism, mindful of how responsible travel contribute to sustainable development of our beloved Cebu,” Costas said.
Speakers during the one-day summit are Ann Dumaliang, general manager of Masungi Georeserve, who will talk on “Creating a Sense of Place”; Rex Layos, distributor of Kawayan Watches, on “Social Entrepreneurship”; April Cuenca, blogger and owner of social app Tripkada, on “Building Communities to Travel”; Canadian travel blogger Kyle “Kulas” Jennermann on “Travel Storytelling”; Max Limpag, journalist and apps developer on “Digital Tourism”; and Bhobby Nacordo, Provincial Human Resources and Management officer, on “Careers in Tourism”.
Miss Tourism International 2013 Angelie Gomez is hosting the summit, with JP Lao and Ryan Borinaga serving as moderators.
Costas said the summit is also in celebration of 2017 as “International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development”, which is a “unique opportunity to explore and highlight tourism’s potential to help transform the world into a place of prosperity and wellbeing for all.”
In partnership with Smart Communications, the summit would also have the launching of the Technology, Research, and Innovation for People, Prosperity, and Planet Sustainability, or TRIPPPS, which is a search for the best app using digital technology in giving solutions to tourism issues.
“Tourism is the biggest industry in the world, contributing one in every 11 jobs. As one of the largest and fastest-growing socio-economic sectors of our times, tourism can stimulate economic growth, create decent jobs and business opportunities, helping millions of people escape poverty and improve their livelihoods,” he said.
But he emphasized that tourism should be sustainable; thus, having the right policies in place is paramount., as it contributes to the preservation of ecosystems and biodiversity, protection of natural and cultural heritage, and solutions to many other pressing challenges.
“Thus, the young leaders and young movers are gathered to talk about the betterment of tourism in Cebu and their respective places,” Costas said.
Participants would sign a manifesto towards the end of the summit signifying their commitment towards advancing sustainable tourism.
The event is sponsored by SM as venue partner; Golden Prince Hotel, which offered free accommodation for the speakers; Kawayan Watches; Smart Communications; and Human Nature.
First 150 participants to register online get freebies. Kawayan watches, LTE-ready cellphones, wi-fi sticks, and Human Nature products, would also be raffled off.