The Mpumalanga Tourism and Parks Agency (MTPA) on Friday, 18 August launched the first Women in Tourism – Mpumalanga Chapter. The event held in Emalahleni was attended by key phenomenal women who operate businesses within the tourism sector in the province.
The Mpumalanga chapter is the first of its kind in the province following the national event annually hosted by the National Department of Tourism. This launch forms part of a series of events and activities aimed at celebrating tourism month as a build up to the World Tourism Day celebrations in September.
“As we celebrate Women’s month, this launch presents an opportunity to recognise the work that women in the tourism sector do. Our intention with this chapter is to promote women’s economic empowerment in tourism through partnerships with various stakeholders. This will involve improving employment/entrepreneurship opportunities for women by facilitating access to jobs and creating possibilities for career advancement”, said Mr Johannes Nobunga, Chief Executive Officer of MTPA.
The Women in Tourism (WiT) forum was first established by the National Department of Tourism (NDT) with the aim of addressing the economic inequalities and challenges faced by women within the sector. The WIT agenda is centred on ‘Commanding Respect, ascertaining Recognition of women contribution in the sector, encouraging Representation in economic activities and leadership, and producing Results which will enhance the supply and demand for domestic tourism.
Today’s launch presents a platform to give recognition to women that have invested their resources in breaking barriers and advancing the course of inclusive participation. All women in attendance were acknowledged for the commitment and sacrifices made in advancing tourism within their respective communities.
This being the first event in Mpumalanga, it was attended by Queeen Ramotsehoa a renowned life and business coach, champions of tourism business in the three regions of the province i.e. Lisa Sheard (Ehlanzeni), Melinda Stark (Gert Sibande) and Nomsa Mazibuko (Nkangala) as well as other industry players throughout the province. Over and above the jam packed programme where women were pampered to the fullest, an industrial tour around Emalahleni was conducted as well as a networking session.
To view the Mpumalanga’s jam packed tourism month programme, visit www.mpumalanga.com. This year’s World Tourism Day will be celebrated in Mpumalanga on 27 September 2017.