AfSAE trains Association Executives to drive tourism business events in Ghana

As part of efforts to build capacity to tap into the one trillion dollars global tourism business events and related activities, a two-day training workshop on the theme "Essential Practices in Association Management" has been successfully completed at the Accra Tourist Information Center for association executives.

Run by the African Society of Association Executives (AfSAE), the workshop was organized in collaboration with the Society for AIDS in Africa (SAA) and the Ghana National Convention and Visitors Bureau (GNCVB), the newly established unit of the Ghana Tourism Authority (GTA) responsible for coordinating Ghana's tourism business events.

"Associations form the backbone of most economies," observed Mr Gregg Tulley, management consultant and international meeting planner, who was one of two facilitators for the workshop.

Both he and Mr Jeffers Miruka, President of the African Society of Association Executives (AfSAE) emphasized the need for civil society and professionals to collaborate, form trade associations, and use their strengths to articulate the value of the visitor economy as wherever an association meets, whether locally or abroad, requires the use of hospitality facilities which impact the hospitality sector positively.

The workshop was part of programs to empower tourism hospitality associations and executives with the tools and skills to strengthen their advocacy and governance in readiness for the impending increase in meetings, incentive, conventions and events/exhibitions (MICE) globally referred to now as business events.

Associations makes it more convenient to measure industry trends, and create the opportunity for industry training and knowledge sharing, as well as create avenues for investments during these events.

Operating under the brand name 'Meet In Ghana', the GNCVB is the GTA's public interface working with the private sector, associations and meeting planners to facilitate the smooth delivery of services for MICE.

PaJohn Dadson is the lead at the GNCVB, and notes that, "globally, impact on economic development by MICE activity is pretty significant, and as we prepare to market our offerings to attract more international group tourism business events, this workshop has opened our eyes to world trends from which to learn."

Participants at the workshop, who were drawn from selected executive of associations in the Ghana Tourism Federation (GHATOF) membership, as well as from the health sector, remarked on the rich content of the program, and were delighted for the knowledge share.

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