FTTSA Guest Letter
Whilst enjoying your experience with Dyer Island Cruises and Marine Dynamics, you may be pleased to know that your holiday is bringing others rewards too.
Dyer Island Cruises and Marine Dynamics are involved extensively in marine conservation. Local school children are exposed to the marine environment through educational tours, and rural women are supported through the Nolwandle craft project.
These two sister companies set the bar for responsible marine adventures in South Africa and globally. They deliver quality experiences to visitors while respecting marine life and conserving the resource base upon which tourism to this very special part of South Africa depends.
These and other aspects of the business have led Dyer Island Cruises to be certified by Fair Trade in Tourism South Africa (FTTSA).The FTTSA certification mark is the first in the world to endorse fair and responsible tourism practice. It is awarded to tourism businesses that adhere to fair trade criteria, such as: fair wages and working conditions; fair operations; fair distribution of benefits; ethical business practice; and respect for human rights, culture and the environment.
Tourism is now one of the largest employers in the world, accounting for 10.2%of the world’s GDP and employing more than 231 million people. It is a powerful industry that has the potential to create huge opportunities, as well as risks,for host countries and communities.
FTTSA’s mission, through the FTTSA certification Trademark, is to ensure that tourism does create opportunity, by boosting local economic development and promoting social well-being. And we know we are not alone. Two thirds of the globe’s citizens now want companies to go beyond making a profit and contribute to broader societal goals. And some 70% of travellers think it is important that their travel benefits people living in the host destination through job and business opportunities.
FTTSA salutes Dyer Island Cruises & Marine Dynamics for its achievements, and hopes that you will feel proud to support an establishment that is developing and sustaining its wider community in turn.
First Choice Responsible Tourism Award
First Choice Award. London November 2006. Wilfred Chivell’s Dyer Island Cruises walked away with the prestigious commendation for “Best In marine Environment” awarded by First choice Responsible Tourism in London.
The First Choice Responsible Tourism Awards are the largest of their kind in the world and are a collaboration between on-line travel agent responsible travel.com who organise the Awards; UK media partners The Times and Geographical Magazine; supporters Conservation International; and The World Travel Market who host the presentation event. The central tenet of the Awards is that all types of tourism – from niche to mainstream – can and should be operated in a way that respects and benefits destinations and local people.
The Awards are different from other tourism Awards in that winners are nominated by tourists. In 2006 we had 1200 nominations from readers of The Times, responsible travel.com & Geographical Magazine. Nominees under consideration are sent a detailed questionnaire and required to provide references. Independent of the references, opinions are solicited from a range of informed individuals relevant to each country. A list of those under consideration is then put forward to a panel of 13 expert judges who review the detailed responsible tourism questionnaires, and take up references.
PRESS RELEASE – MONDAY 13 NOVEMBER 2006
‘Global Responsible Tourism Day’ was held on Wednesday, 8 November at the World Travel Market in London. This first ever WTM day dedicated to the sustainable development of tourism on a global scale, will now be marked as an annual event. Three South African tourism companies were recognised in the 2006 awards. In addition, an unprecedented number of finalists were from the African continent.
Dyer Island Cruises walked away with the prestigious commendation for ‘Best In Marine Environment’.This small company in Gansbaai has implemented far reaching ethical ‘responsible tourism’ practises in the few years since the establishment of their marine tourism business. Embracing the holistic approach of ‘responsible tourism’ is not without its challenges and requires a certain amount of self sacrifice. Wilfred Chivell’s ultimate desire is to see conservation and community upliftment reaping in equal measure the economic benefits created from tourism.
On Thursday morning, Dyer Island Cruises will be launching their community crafts and skills development project ‘Nolwandle’ (meaning from the sea) located in the township of Mashakane near Gansbaai. Assisted by funding from the British High Commissionin Pretoria, Overberg Municipality and local tourism partners, this centre will provide empowerment skills for local women to create a sustainable future for themselves. In view of the ‘Global Climate Change’ conference running currently in Nairobi, the changing demands and trends from overseas tourists as well as operators, the need is there for our government to establish a structured portfolio for sustainable tourism development.
You can read more about the winners and the awards process on the website: www.responsibletravel.com
Best in aMarine Environment sponsored by
Winner:WakatobiDive Resort, Southeast Sulawesi, Indonesia
Wakatobi’s raison d’etre is to help the environment in an over-fished region where the reefs are being destroyed. Employing 150 people from the local community, they have created the Collaborative Community Based Reef Management Program whereby in exchange for direct payments to local villages, reef sanctuaries have been established. Today 12km of reef enjoys complete protection by the local community.
Highly commended: Basata Ecolodge,Egypt and Dyer Island Cruises, Western Cape, South Africa