Study Visit in Nepal: Objectives achieved and follow up

Project: BOCOTO, Boosting Community-based Tourism and Youth Work for Global Sustainable Development

General objective
To engage youth organizations & stakeholders to work together to develop & promote CBT as a catalyst for inclusive & sustainable economic growth, youth employment, social inclusion, well-being & poverty reduction, while at the same time protecting cultural values and the natural heritage.

Countries involved: Italy, Turkey, Nepal, India, Kenya, Spain, Vietnam.

The first Study Visit of the BOCOTO project took place in Nepal (1-11 August), hosted by the “Campaign for Change Nepal” CCN association. Representatives of partner associations from Italy, Spain, Vietnam and Nepal were involved. The BOCOTO project is a Capacity Building co-financed by the European Union within the Erasmus + Program, which intends to deepen the concept of Community-Based Tourism as opposed to mass tourism. The development of Community-Based Tourism aims to strengthen the capacities of youth organizations in promoting itineraries that respect biodiversity, cultural differences and at the same time protect the environment and Human Rights. Taking advantage of a multicultural approach, the project intends to involve young people and international stakeholders in a cooperative work to changes the mentality of travellers and producing an overall improvement in the tourism system.

Through the activities carried out in Nepal it was possible to discover the tourist offer of some remote villages, located in a region (Palpa) 300 km west of Kathmandu. Specifically, the case of the village of Gumba was explored, a community of about 600 houses with 3000 inhabitants deployed among the valleys of the adjacent mountains. A part of the community, about 18 residential units have rooms to accommodate tourists and for several years have been receiving groups of international and Nepalese travellers. This experience allowed the participants to understand how a village can organize a Community-Based Tourism. During the rest of the Study Visit, the Nepalese policies regarding the tourism sector were analysed in detail, with visits and meetings that involved numerous local representatives at both public and private level.

PRISM as project coordinator, has the delicate role of bringing together the interests of the nations involved and channel it into sustainable and inclusive development goals. A total of 6 Study Visits are planned (Nepal, Vietnam, India, Kenya, Spain, Turkey), plus a final event in Italy, where the mosaic of the expected results of the project will be completed.

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