Eight tourism operators from Malekula will be highlighted at the upcoming Toktok Vanuatu tradeshow thanks to the support of the Australian Government funded TVET Program. Over the past 18 months, local bungalow owners and cultural tour groups have participated in a series of workshops and coaching sessions delivered through the Malampa TVET Centre. This business support program has enabled participants to dramatically improve the quality of their small businesses and now be in a position to advertise their products to international travel operators and tourism industry partners. One of the tour groups from the program, “Wala-Rano Small Nambas” has even been selected as the national representative for Vanuatu Culture and Tradition at the Toktok event.
Toktok Vanuatu will also mark the launch of the Malampa Travel Call Centre, which is the result of collaboration between the AusAID TVET Program, the Department of Tourism, NZAID, TVL and Telsat. The call centre will provide much-needed telecommunications and booking support to local Malekula tourism entrepreneurs and is the first of its kind for the country.
The Director of the Department of Tourism, Mr George Borugu, has confirmed that the assistance of the TVET Program has significantly contributed to the development of the sector at the provincial level and is delighted at the strong representation from Malampa at Toktok: “The Department is very happy with the partnership we have with the TVET Program and the way in which the profile and status of tourism in Malampa has been raised through our work together”.
The TVET Centre in Santo has recently commenced a similar program of business skills support to local tourism operators in Sanma province and Australia is pleased to be able to continue to contribute to building skills in this priority area of economic growth.