A first training workshop was organized from 2 to 5 November 2020 by UNESCO and the National Centre for Documentation and Scientific Research (CNDRS), following the official launch of the project "Capacity Building in Sustainable Tourism Development and Management for World Heritage in Comoros" on 15 October 2020.
The project, financed by the Netherlands Funds-in-Trust to UNESCO, aims to strengthen the capacities of key stakeholders in Comoros, including the national team in charge of preparing the UNESCO World Heritage nomination file for the Historic Sultanates of Comoros, to develop a sustainable tourism management plan and implementation strategy for the promotion of the cultural sector in Comoros using the UNESCO sustainable tourism toolkit, expertise and other resources of the UNESCO Sustainable Tourism Programme, and to implement a training activity for local tour guides in the Historic Sultanates of Comoros.
This project is also in line with the UNESCO SIDS Action Plan Priority 4 (“Encourage the development and management of culturally sensitive and responsible sustainable tourism”), as well as UNESCO’s Global Priority Africa Flagship 5 (“Harnessing the power of culture for sustainable development and peace in a context of regional integration”).
The workshop was opened by Ms. Wahidat Hassani, Director General of Arts and Culture (DGAC) who thanked UNESCO and the Netherlands for their contribution to this project. About twenty participants from the three main islands of Comoros met physically in the premises of CNDRS in Anjouan, Mohéli and Grande Comores, which was led online by the sustainable tourism expert Ms. Dominique Verdugo.
The workshop started with a presentation on the mapping of cultural resources prepared within the framework of the project by the national team led by the Comorian cartographer, Mr. Cheihani Said Abdallah. After an introduction to the concept of sustainable tourism by the international expert Ms. Dominique Verdugo, the participants followed the different UNESCO guides on sustainable tourism with group work after each session.
Following this first workshop, the national team will work on their sustainable tourism plan and UNESCO will organize a second workshop to finalize the plan in 2021.