New strategies for Community Tourism in light of COVID pandemic

Denise Charles

Newly re-elected President of the Dominica Community Tourism Association Inc (DCTAI) which seeks to highlight and develop community-based sites that can be used to attract local and overseas-based visitors to villages around the country, says the COVID-19 pandemic has taught the association some valuable lessons.

Josephine Dublin-Prince was officially reappointed into the position at the association’s 5th Annual General Meeting (AGM) held recently under the theme ‘Strengthening Community Tourism Through This Global Pandemic.’

“There is an opportunity now that COVID has presented to us. It has forced us to look within. COVID has forced us to be innovative and creative. It has also forced us to know more about utilization of our technology and we need to take advantage of that,” she said.

Dublin-Prince noted that on the island, “we do have the human resource and the natural assets to advance the sector, therefore the onus is on all citizens to capitalize on such resources.”

She said that as one of the major economic pillars for community development, community tourism must be taken seriously.

“The whole concept of community tourism is not just an individual thing, it consists of stimulating the community to do for itself. It consists of actually having the community to hone its own development,” Dublin-Prince remarked. “The whole issue of community development and community tourism  is about the environment.”

She told the DCTAI members that adhering to the tourism master plan will see benefits for community-based Tourism and highlighted the recent revision of the DCTAI strategy to avoid diversion.

Commending the association for their ten years of service, Minister for Tourism Denise Charles reaffirmed the government’s commitment to assisting the development of community tourism.

She identified strong community groups as key to moving the sector forward.

“There are currently several community-based tourism projects in various stages of completion, the cold Soufriere washroom and reception facility, OPEC bay facility, Sulfur river tours, Khana heritage site, Layou washroom facility, Bense tourism and reception centre, Castle Bruce beach development, Indian river trail enhancement are just a few examples of government-financed projects recently completed or ongoing,” Charles stated.

The minister called on the citizenry to remain focused as she is of the view that all energies must be channeled towards building stronger community groups, especially during this global pandemic.

The DCTAI aims to collaborate with and enable groups and organizations to develop sustainable tourism products and services that are unique, marketable, and experimental in keeping with the national tourism policy and thrust.

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  1. How does community tourism fit?
    March 3, 2021

    Dominica’s tourism product and strategy is still not clearly defined. Is it adventure? Is it culture? Is it safety (as in “Safe in Nature”)? Once the major selling point is defined, then the strategies can be developed and integrated to strengthen Dominica’s position in a unique way. If the focus is primarily on adventure, then upgrading the natural sites is the way to go. If it is culture, then agriculture and fisheries should be essential components of community tourism. If it is safety, more thought has to be given to developing a safe and secure environment for visitors. Dominica must also decide who is its target market – foreigners? Dominicans resident overseas? Dominicans resident locally? or the non-proven OECS market? A basic principle of marketing is that you cannot be all things to all people….. therefore, it is necessary to decide which areas can be developed into products of excellence and who will be the primary beneficiaries.

  2. eyeronee
    March 2, 2021

    Here’s a thought – let’s keep tourism out of our communities and have more meaningful employment or self-employment opportunities instead. Tourism should not be everybody’s business.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 2
  3. Skerro
    March 2, 2021

    Well is in prison they want to out people plus you have to pay for it that’s why the place is so backward why not send someone at there home that is negative and in five days ask the person to do another test but no they looking for money on poor people that work hard and still trying to do business in da they can stay there with there shit quarantine

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 2
  4. badbaje
    March 2, 2021

    They are trying their best with what they have. I wish them well.
    However, tourism is not bringing in any money now, and the people need money to continue buying the things they need to survive.
    Enter Agriculture and Fisheries. This will allow them to provide their own food in the future.
    They cannot plant today and reap today, but if they do not plant today, they will never be able to reap anytime in the future.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 2
  5. I MUST Admit
    March 1, 2021

    Cricket tourism Dennis? Well can’t be because cricket west indies just hit us with a vote of no confidence when they refused to even consider us for one of the series against Sri Lanka, though we talk and boast of being one of the safesr Covid 19 islands. So Dennis the only new type of covid tourism I see is a covid ganja tourism, where our young men always have a joint smoking. Is that what you have to offer to tourists? Even the Chinese them are tired of seeing our young people smoke their ganja

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 23 Thumb down 3
  6. I Still Red
    March 1, 2021

    “There is an opportunity now that COVID has presented to us”.

    When West Indies agreed to host Sri Lanka for 3 T20’s, three ODI’S and three tests starting this Wednesday, I said with Dominica being one of the best managed covid 19 countries still with zero death according to Skerrit them, I was convinced that Dominica was one of the islands to host a a test or the entire tour since all the rest of the test playing islands are under the mercy of covid-19. But to see everything went to Antigua? Boss I conclude that covid 19 left us with a new opportunity for a new type of tourism but to not get a test, a T20 or a ODI was an indictment against our government and their inability to do anything that will help showcase our country in any positive way. Our only new opportunity to tourism is our ability to sell our passports to crooks and criminals around the world.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 23 Thumb down 4
    • March 1, 2021

      Be grateful that Dominica is “one of the best managed COVID-19 Countries still with zero deaths”. Keep it that way for a little while longer. We don’t want Dominica to become infested with COVID-19, we can’t afford that pandemic. Play it safe. There’s plenty of time for entertainment.

      Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 4 Thumb down 4
      • I Still Red
        March 2, 2021

        @ curious you talking foolishness. I guess you don’t reside here to point out one thing we doing to keep covid 19 out that the other Caribbean islands are not doing. I can tell you we are doing nothing that St. Lucia, barbados, Antigua and others are not doing. The only difference is that of their international airports that we don’t have and before covid all of the islands were doing better than us. #2. Covid will be with us for for a long time and it just a shame that Dominica still has not found a way to normalize life with Covid in mind. I bet inspite of covid-19 you are able to live a normal life wherever you are. Think of the people of Dominica that invested in buses with Ross University in mind. Skerrit forced Ross out and because of covid-19 buses are either running empty or are parked because of the lazy Skerrit. By the way, though we might not have had any
        Covidd 19 deaths, I bet you many have died from covid related stress because of loans and mortgage that can’t be…

        Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0
      • click here
        March 4, 2021

        i thought we had the vaccines to deal with it? Are you sayng they dont prevent or fight COVID? if thats the case, why are we taking it? I thought vaccines are meant to prevent a disease.

  7. Queen of corruption
    March 1, 2021

    Their new strategy is more laziness, more corruption and more pretending that they are working when they a not. Covid or no covid Dominica can go nowhere under this corrupt and accurse thing we call government. In recent times we had tropical storm Irma, hurricane Maria and now covid and in as much as they were bad for any developed country let alone a country that’s been destroyed by greedy politicians the last 20 years, what is clear to me is while the government has always blamed their own destruction on storms and covid somehow government ministers and their associates have done much much better during those disasters than anything else. So they get richer during Erica, Maria and Covid while we the people have been depressed by them. So according to Skerrit himself tell Dennis Charles and the rest to ” go to hell” where they frankly belong

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 22 Thumb down 4
  8. click here
    March 1, 2021

    blablablablabla. Denise doesnt really know much about tourism. Why doesnt she address the clannish village council mentality that is tied to the government that has set back various villages and the country on a whole. Why dont the various communities have quality venues and facilities unique to their area to promote not just tourism but trade and commerical activity in every community. All these old square pegs in round hole all they can do it get training and repeat rhetoric and NOTHING! changes in Dominica. IF it does on the ground, the mentality of the people dont understand who the goal is and only try to execute their own agenda.
    When people in the community try to make real change on their own government always there to kaibosh. Look at lindo park for example.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 19 Thumb down 3
  9. Me
    March 1, 2021

    Where is Colin Piper?

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 14 Thumb down 1
    • click here
      March 2, 2021

      what Piper have to say again? You getting the message from his boss. If it was Piper speaking, you would say where is Denise?

      Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 2 Thumb down 9
    • Rogish
      March 2, 2021

      Who cares, hope we have seen the last of him. Waste of space!

      Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 2

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