Global Recognition for Kerala’s Responsible Tourism Initiatives

Tuesday, November 7, 2023


Kerala has been honoured with the Global Responsible Tourism Award 2023, recognizing the state’s efforts in sustainable tourism and empowering women through initiatives led by the Responsible Tourism Mission (RTM). The award was presented in the “Best for Local Sourcing, Food, and Craft” category and is organized by the Responsible Tourism Partnership and the International Centre for Responsible Tourism (ICRT).

The State RT Mission was chosen to receive the award, which is the highest recognition given for inclusive and sustainable tourism initiatives. It was chosen because it ensures that indigenous products are effectively marketed and connects women-led SMEs with tourism activities. The organizers, based in London, chose Kerala RTM and Eswatini, a landlocked nation in Southern Africa known for its environmentally friendly Ngwenya Glass, as joint winners.

“This international award reflects the universal appeal of the responsible tourism projects that Kerala has successfully implemented, thereby setting a viable model for the rest of India as well as other countries,” Tourism Minister Shri P A Mohamed Riyas said.

Kerala RT Mission has received the Responsible Tourism Global Award for its women-friendly tourism project supported by UN Women. This marks the second time RTM has won this award, following its Water STREET project in Maravanthuruthu, Kottayam district, last year. This achievement completes a hat-trick for RTM this year, having also received the ‘Gold’ award from the Government of India and the ‘Gold’ award from ICRT.

The award jury acknowledged the efforts made by the RTM to promote the ethnic and traditional foods of each community through tourism, offering visitors the chance to savor authentic local cuisine while staying in local homes and contributing to the local economy.

RTM’s impactful initiatives, such as the woman-friendly tourism project, ethnic cuisine experiences, experiential tourism packages, local handicraft marketing, community training, and collaborations with local self-government institutions, contributed to winning the Responsible Tourism Global Award. The award recognizes efforts in categories like Tackling Plastic Waste, Meaningful Connections, Local Sourcing, Food, and Craft, Addressing Climate Change, Diversity and Inclusion, and Nature-Positive Tourism. Around 25,000 households in the state are benefiting from RT Mission’s activities, emphasizing its positive impact on local communities.

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