Nearly 30 journalists have convened in Kasane, Botswana to debate the role of the media in advocating sustainable tourism and wildlife conservation as its major asset. The event is part of the UNWTO/Chimelong Programme that promotes wildlife as key driver of tourism development.
International and local journalists from renowned media outlets* have completed a media training workshop in Kasane, Botswana, to enhance their knowledge on sustainable tourism and wildlife and analyze the impact of their work and their contribution to the topic. The workshop is part of the activities of the UNWTO/Chimelong Programme that commenced in early 2017 and that includes capacity building, training and advocacy actions on sustainable tourism and wildlife.
The training addressed the impact of wildlife tourism in the African continent, the different journalistic angles of the topic and the relevance of story-telling in reporting. Challenges such as access to information related to wildlife management, media capacities to cover technical aspects of this theme and the need to improve relations and exchanges with relevant authorities were mentioned by most of the participants.
Participants had the opportunity to propose solutions and recommendations to the difficulties they normally face to cover these topics. The creation of a network of African journalists specialized in sustainable tourism, capacity building-related activities addressing the media and regular exchanges with tourism stakeholders were some of the ideas shared by the participants.
The workshop held in Kasane is the second activity of this type in the framework of the UNWTO/Chimelong Programme. The first took place in the Republic of Congo last July 2017, where nearly 20 African journalists enhanced their capacities on the multidimensional coverage of sustainable tourism.
The UNWTO/Chimelong Programme results from the partnership between UNWTO and Chimelong Group to be implemented between 2017 and 2019 under the theme of sustainable tourism and wildlife protection. The initiative includes advocacy efforts to contribute to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) through sustainable tourism with particular reference to wildlife conservation, to enhance capacities on sustainable tourism and wildlife conservation of both tourism authorities and the global media, to engage stakeholders from the private sector on the topic and to foster research.
*Media outlets participating: BBC, Lonely Planet, Xinhua News Agency, EL PAIS, Radio France Internationale, Jeune Afrique, Radio Botswana, Botswana Gazette, Channel Africa, Africa Renewal, First Issues, The Telegraph, Botswana Guardian, Botswana Unplugged and Gabz FM.