Improved skills through hospitality training in Cambodia
“I felt self-confident as I had obtained substantial resources [knowledge] for myself. If I were to identify one lesson from the training that helped me achieve my development, it would be those hospitality knowledge and communication skills. For me, the hospitality training is a very beneficial project for Kampot [province], because it has provided both opportunity and knowledge to hospitality workers who did not possess enough skills, and also help them to obtain higher income” says Ms. Lihouy Tiev. Ms. Tiev participated in the Hospitality Kampuchea (HoKa), the 1st In-House training programme in the country targeted at the existing low-skilled workers of hotels and restaurants who can apply the technical skills in their workplace. HoKa has been introduced to Cambodia by the Mekong Inclusive Growth and Innovation Programme (MIGIP), implemented by Swisscontact, the Swiss Foundation for Technical Cooperation, and funded by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), Happel Foundation and the Kuoni and Hugentobler Foundation. A story that shows the significant impact to the SDGs 1, 4, 5 and 8 that tourism can have, if developed in an inclusive and sustainable way.
Tourism Governance and Destination Marketing in Tunisia
The project contributes to diversifying and improving the competitiveness of Tunisian tourism by encouraging the development of new approaches to local tourism management and new regional tourism brands. Tourism accounts for 14% of national GDP and faces many structural and profound challenges. Tunisian tourism urgently needs reforms and measures to improve its positioning and added value in a competitive and increasingly segmented global market. Limited to a few coastal regions and heavily dependent on foreign tourism organizations, the sector is struggling to develop new offerings, while the country has real potential in terms of both product diversification and tourism regions. Swisscontact uses an inclusive approach involving tour operators, local public and private institutions, providers of ancillary and complementary activities and civil society actors, with particular attention to young people, women and small service providers. The project also aims at developing marketing techniques for tourism through new marketing approaches and methods, in particular destination marketing with digital and participatory approaches.
Mekong Inclusive Growth and Innovation Programme (MIGIP Cambodia)
Mekong Inclusive Growth and Innovation Programme (MIGIP)  focuses on enterprise development in the agriculture and tourism sectors. Cambodia’s agriculture sector which is a major employer and livelihood option for the majority of the poor, is one of the key engines for economic growth and poverty reduction in the country. MIGIP recognises the critical role that agro-technologies can play in transforming Cambodia agriculture towards sustainable intensification. Tourism sector is a key driver for local economic development in Cambodia. MIGIP recognises that growth in the tourism sector has the potential to contribute to job creation, revenue generation, the improvement of people’s livelihood and poverty alleviation.

Agriculture Sector

To increase production through sustainable intensification and to increase the competitiveness of the agriculture sector, the use of improved technology and techniques are necessary. Hence, MIGIP is supporting the promotion of existing and new technologies giving special emphasis to sustainable agriculture. To achieve this vision in agriculture, MIGIP is working in the following intervention areas:
  1. Increase efficiency of service provision: by improving functions that support agricultural technology such as access to finance, information services and extension services
  2. Promote the adoption of agriculture technology: by increasing awareness of various agriculture technologies
  3. Improve the quality of crops: by working on various mechanisms with the private sector and other market actors to transfer knowledge to smallholder farmers
  4. Enhance commercial orientation of agriculture technologies: by facilitating stakeholder research on the commercialisation of agriculture technology particularly on sustainable agriculture.

Tourism sector

To increase the competitiveness of the tourism sector, MIGIP focuses on strengthening destination management structure, processes, marketing, and skills through public-private partnerships at the sub-national level. To achieve this vision in tourism, MIGIP is working in the following intervention areas:
  1. Strengthen destination marketing: by developing sub-brands through the Visitor Flows marketing strategy
  2. Improve service quality and skills: by providing in-house trainings aligned with the national standards for low-skilled workers
  3. Strengthen specific visitor flows: by supporting local businesses to develop new products and activities targeted to specific market segments
  4. Enhance destination management structure: by promoting public-private partnership in destination management.
Local Skills Development for Youth
In the Local Skills Development for Youth (LSDY) project, unemployed young men and women from the Lake Victoria region, which is particularly affected by poverty, have access to modular, needs-oriented vocational education and training. Thanks to the training, they can earn their livelihood on their own as self-employed persons or employees and significantly improve their situation and that of their families. Furthermore, young entrepreneurs, who have already completed their vocational training courses in the last phase, are supported in professionalising their small businesses. Special focus is given to the access to coaching and financial services. The project makes use of innovative vocational training approaches, whether through learning methods in a company (based on a dual vocational training) or work in learning groups. Young adults acquire practical and technical skills and are equipped with financial and life skills to take on their journey into professional life. Project activities
  1. Vocational training: basic and further training courses The project primarily focuses on vocational training and practical experience in companies.
  2. Promotion of entrepreneurship Apart from technical skills, the project develops the business acumen of the trainees. In advanced courses, young adults learn how to plan their business, analyse customer needs, calculate profits and set prices.
  3. Facilitate financial know-how and access to financial services The beneficiaries acquire basic financial literacy, which they can readily apply in savings and lending groups. The project also facilitates access to formal banks, savings and credit cooperatives and new innovative products, such as microleasing, tailored to the needs of young adults and entrepreneurs.
  4. Strengthening social skills and self-competence Through its courses, the project develops social skills and self-competence of the youth, who are often caught up in a vicious cycle of poverty and frustration. For example, they learn about health, hygiene, safety and communication.
  5. Networking young people with labour market Linkages between prospective employees with potential employers are facilitated through participation at fairs, internships etc.
Economically strong regions through sustainable tourism (MIGIP Laos)
The objective of the project is to introduce new models for promoting localities that involve the social, environmental, and economic needs of local populations while creating additional income and jobs. Despite high and sustained economic growth, Laos remains one of the UN’s “Least Developed Countries” – one third of the population lives below the poverty line. The project creates jobs and income opportunities in the tourism sector, thereby contributing to poverty reduction. Swisscontact is applying an approach by which local actors can participate actively in developing the tourism sector with increasing flows of tourists. This approach not only considers economic, but also social and environmental factors: natural beauty is to be highlighted and protected; the local population must benefit from economic growth. Promoting the important tourism area of Champasak lies at the heart of our efforts. Through targeted trainings, tourism SMEs will improve the quality of services they offer, thereby enhancing their competitiveness. At the same time, the project is further developing the range of available services and activities. To this we can add new products and attractions, which we develop together with our local partners. By becoming a more attractive destination, international guests will stay for longer periods and also spend more money in the process. To find out more, please check the following links:
Pheun Than Heng A SipTraining Programme
The tourism and hospitality sector in Lao PDR has expanded rapidly in recent years and the trend is set to continue. Tourism and hospitality services often drive revenues for micro, small and medium sized enterprises (MSMEs), particularly in rural areas, which in turn can provide the livelihood for people from poor backgrounds. However, often MSMEs are not able to attract and retain customers due to low service quality; and many job-seekers, particularly those from disadvantaged backgrounds, lack the necessary skills to break into the sector. This prevents MSMEs and disadvantaged job-seekers from benefitting from the potential of the growing tourism and hospitality sector in the country. The Pheun Than Heng A Sip (PTHAS) Training Programme includes over 120 training units, each tailor-made to address the issue of low service quality in tourism and hospitality businesses. Swisscontact originally developed the programme in partnership with the Lao National Institute for Tourism and Hospitality (LANITH), and piloted it in Champasak Province with the Department of Information Culture and Tourism (DICT), and the Champasak Hotel and Restaurant Association (CHRA), under a previous project from 2013 to 2016. To find out more, check out the links below  
Sustainable Tourism Destination Development
The SUSTOUR project is part of the overall Sustainable Tourism Development in Indonesia (STDI) Program of SECO, led by both SECO and the MoTCE. The Program focuses to develop a sustainable and inclusive expansion of tourism in Indonesia. SUSTOUR aims to increase employment and income opportunities for the local population through inclusive and sustainable economic growth in two targeted destinations, namely in Wakatobi and the western part of Flores (Labuan Bajo). Please find more information in the linksbelow:
Destinations in South-East Tunisia: new approaches and skills in the tourism sector
The main objective of the project is to contribute to the attractiveness of South-East Tunisia through new approaches and skills for the development of sustainable, diversified and inclusive tourism. This will improve the income and living conditions of the local population. Since the revolution in 2011, 2018 has seen the best tourism result with 7.5 million tourists (an increase of 17% compared to 2017). Tunisia plans to be among the top three destinations in the world by 2020. However, the sector is in urgent need of reform and diversification. This is linked to the following challenges: lack of diversity of supply - this is concentrated in all-round resorts and hotels, endemic debt which weighs on investment and the quality of infrastructure, unequal quality of services, inadequate training and working conditions, and the sector's lack of profitability. Finally, the increase in competition (Egypt, Morocco) requires new tourist offers adapted to the region. Although the occupancy rate has improved significantly over the last two years, the quality of services is regularly judged to be disappointing, and the added value of tourism is still very low. The challenge now is to promote alternative accommodation, develop inland and short-stay tourism and enhance cultural sites.
Sustainable Tourism Education Development Project (STED)
Tourism is an important part of the Indonesian economy and an important source for generating employment and foreign exchange reserves. Swisscontact has been actively supporting the Indonesian Ministry of Tourism since 2009 to strengthen the competitiveness of selected tourism destinations. The Government of Indonesia has set a number of objectives to improve the role of tourism in the Indonesian economy and has allocated additional funds to the Ministry of Tourism for promotion. The remaining core areas for the Indonesian Government to be addressed are: connectivity, basic services and tourism infrastructure; workforce skills and quality standards; investment and business climate; coordination and implementation capabilities at national and sub-national level. The government of Indonesia has prioritized tourism as one of the main pillars of the country’s economic growth potential. Its strategy is to make the tourism industry Indonesia’s biggest short-term source of foreign exchange revenues. Within the overall framework of the national tourism strategy, the aim is to build up sustainability in the tourism sector through competitive and sustainable destinations and a skilled workforce. The STED project aims to contribute to this goal by working towards a better qualified workforce with relevant skills for the tourism sector. Demand driven education will ensure that graduates meet the standards required by the Indonesian tourism sector, and will equip them with better knowledge on sustainability and inclusion, thereby creating more and better jobs for local population. The project is part of a broader system. While the primary beneficiary is the tourism destination of Lombok, the broader tourism sector in Indonesia and the Indonesian TVET system will also benefit from the project´s results via strengthening of a network of education institutions under the Ministry of Tourism & Creative Economy Republic of Indonesia (MoTCE).
Science-based nature tourism as a strategy for ecosystem protection
The project aims to utilise nature tourism in order to generate alternative income for local communities and mitigate deforestation and conserve biodiversity in the Santa Marta region. The National Development Plan includes the Tourism Sector Plan 2018-2022 "Tourism: the purpose that unites us", which seeks to improve Colombia's competitiveness as a tourist destination. This shall be achieved based on initiatives to strengthen productivity, the generation of value and co-responsibility among the actors in the tourism sector, and the country’s positioning in national and international markets. In this way, the Tourism Sector Plan and the present initiative are aligned in the search for the strengthening of territorial planning and management to develop nature tourism in a sustainable manner. The emphasis lies on protected areas and strategic ecosystems, aiming at the development of infrastructure for the promotion of high-value tourism and specialised products.
Skills Development Programme to Increase Employability of Youth
In Nicaragua, there are 1.4 million working-age young people between the ages of 18 and 30 years; however, approximately 40% of the economically active youth do not have access to employment or do not earn a salary that meets the basic cost of living. This situation is further aggravated in rural areas and in urban peripheries where access to specialised training is difficult, especially training that facilitates incorporation into the labour market. Objective Consolidate processes to improve the quality and relevance of professional training for employability of youth and adults in prioritised sectors and territories. Currently the second phase of the project is being implemented.
Rural Market Opportunities in the Gulf of Fonseca
Inclusive economic growth can break the cycle of poverty and social marginalisation in the Dry Corridor where the Gulf of Fonseca region is located. Agriculture is seen as the priority sector where efforts to address productivity, market and infrastructure issues are concentrated. Similarly, non-agricultural economic activities provide opportunities, as they generate a vigorous and diversified local economy. The Rural Market Opportunities Project in the Gulf of Fonseca contributes to the inclusive local economic development of 33 municipalities located in the region, with an emphasis on vulnerable populations, women and youth; specifically focusing on improving productivity and income. The “Rural Market Opportunities in the Gulf of Fonseca” project is sponsored by Global Affairs Canada and implemented by Swisscontact. It addresses entrenched poverty and low economic productivity in the Dry Corridor by enabling rural MSMEs, including agricultural producers, to take full advantage of the agricultural and non-agricultural market opportunities available to them. The project approach to rural private sector development, is to build strength throughout the local economic system – supporting small businesses to operate more efficiently and effectively; helping them gain access to and meet the demands of local, national and export markets; and fostering an enabling environment that is conducive to their success and sustainability of the businesses. It will also link local economic development plans to broader regional and national strategies to harmonise efforts and make them more efficient. The project will reach 7460 people and their households.
Vocational Skills Development Project
The Vocational Skills Development Program (VSDP) aims to improve the access of women and men from disadvantaged groups to quality vocational skills development (VSD) programs which results in employment or self-employment opportunities in the world of work. The significant lack of an appropriately skilled workforce in Myanmar, particularly for vocational occupations, is seen as a major factor restraining the economy’s potential for growth. In order to support its economy, Myanmar needs a committed, experienced and skilled workforce. To achieve this, there is a need to improve the quality, access and relevance of vocational skills development (VSD), especially for those with limited education and economic opportunities. Strengthened public-private partnerships in VSD are essential for implementing policies and skills development related initiatives that address existing labour market needs. To tackle these challenges, VSDP contributes to improve the VSD system and to make it more inclusive and relevant in Myanmar. It works closely with the private and public sectors and targets learners in ways which ensure high relevance of training to labour market demands. Skills for Hospitality sector In areas with high tourist numbers, the Program focuses on providing skills development in selected hospitality occupations. The Program strengthens the capacity of hotel supervisors at partner hotels to deliver training to line staff and learners from disadvantaged backgrounds. The Program is working with the Ministry of Hotels and Tourism (MoHT) to support its capacity for vocational skills development within Myanmar as well as its integration of hospitality professionals into ASEAN.
Promoting Private Sector Employment
SMEs that operate in competitive and well-organized economic sectors, where public policies better match private sector needs, provide increased sustainable gainful employment for women and men in Kosovo. Kosovo has grown moderately at an average rate of 3% in the last few years and is constantly facing growing labour force. The positive economic trends fall short to generate number of jobs needed to absorb those entering the market every year (around 30,000). Youth, women and minorities (particularly Roma, Ashkali and Egyptian minorities) remain most excluded groups. Formal employment makes around 75% (269,500 employees) of the overall employment, with public sector accounting for 25% of formal jobs. Lack of SME innovation as well as lack of relevant and affordable market support services are limiting SME growth. On the other hand, sustainable sector growth has the highest potential to create SMEs and employment opportunities. Therefore, private sector development and job creation remains the main goals of SDC and of the Kosovo Government. The project contributes to innovations and credible visible changes in the Food and Natural Ingredients and Tourism sectors respectively. Building upon the objectives, achievements, and lessons learned of Phase I, in this current phase 2017 – 2021 the project will tackle private sector development and job creation with more emphasis on youth, women and minorities. The Food and Natural Ingredients sector facilitates and supports opportunities in fresh and processed sectors of fruits and vegetables, medicinal and aromatic plants, and confectionary. Activities in this sector seek to improve the range and diversification of products, improve competitiveness of market actors; develop marketing and certification services, improve promotion and sales of products in local segments, and boost export. The Tourism sector aims to directly contribute to increased numbers of tourists, who spend more and stay longer in the destination, thus
Economic Empowerment of Indigenous Youth and Women (EMPODERA)
The Project will improve the living conditions of indigenous men and women between the ages of 15 and 35 years, so that they can increase their income and improve their capabilities as well as improving the current conditions for autonomous decision-making; gaining access to professional technical education and market insertion opportunities; it will also the promote sustainable entrepreneurship and financial inclusion, as well as the empowerment of women.The department of Alta Verapaz is located in the north of the Republic of Guatemala. It has a total population of 1.3 million people, 50% are women and 50% men; the population is mainly indigenous (94%) and most of them belong to the Q'eqchí and Pocomchí ethnic groups; likewise, 77% reside mainly in the rural area and only 23% of the population lives in urban areas (INE, 2016). The department of Alta Verapaz has the highest indicator of extreme poverty at 53.6% and total poverty level of 83.1%. Instead of improving, as of 2014 (ENCOVI 2016) poverty has increased by 4.3%, making it the poorest department nationwide. When talking about the Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI), Alta Verapaz has the highest index in the country, at 0.529, meaning it has the least access to health, education and minimum quality of life conditions such as housing, electricity, sanitation, drinking water and other necessities. On the subject of reproductive sexual health, the data is alarming: According to the reflected indicators of the MSPAS (INE, SEGEPLAN, 2017), the fertility rate is 2.8 children per woman, maternity in adolescents (15 to 19 years) is 7% and there is total of 11,605 cases of young mothers from ages 10 to 19. The project will intervene in 12 municipalities in 3 key areas of the department of Alta Verapaz and in four sectors That have the greatest economic potential: The sectors of forestry, tourism, construction and environmental services.
Nuevas Oportunidades: Productive Reintegration of Returning Migrants
The project seeks the productive reintegration of returning migrants through the introduction of certification of competences in El Salvador and eventually in the whole Northern Triangle (El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras). Thousands of migrants are forced every year to return to their home countries. Back in their country in the northern triangle, many returning migrants face difficulties. Although the vast majority of the returnees have no criminal background, the deportees are perceived as criminals by their fellow citizens and have difficulty integrating into the labour market. At the same time, these practically experienced skilled workers bear great potential for the labour market, as there is a demand for qualified workers in growing economic sectors such as construction and tourism.
FOMILENIO II: Review of job profiles, skills requirements and the design of training programs for the sugar, construction, poultry, tourism and coffee sectors
The program FOMILENIO II included designing training programs for prioritised occupational careers in the sectors of construction, poultry, sugar, tourism and coffee, under the competence-oriented approach. The innovation here was that the programs are designed according to the explicit need of the productive sectors which are channeled through the sectorial committees. The idea was to encourage and obtain an active and broad participation of relevant actors for each stage of work, because this is how the products are validated and in fact pay for the increase in worker’s productivity or augment the job market. The FOMILENIO II program was financed by the United States government, through the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC), and by the government of El Salvador.
Skills Development Programme
The overall goal of the Skills Development Programme (SDP) is for disadvantaged young women and men and low-skilled workers in five rural provinces of Cambodia (Preah Vihear, Stung Treng, Kratie, Mondul Kiri and Ratanak Kiri) to gain access to decent employment and increased income. The programme pursues two main objectives: 1) The Cambodian Technical Vocational Education and Training (TVET) system will be supported to become more effective in the target provinces, 2) Disadvantaged young men and women and low-skilled workers will improve their employability and income through technical skills, soft skills and entrepreneurship skills. SDP is an SDC-mandated project and is implemented by Swisscontact and INBAS in collaboration with the Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training (MoLVT) and the Ministry of Tourism (MoT). The programme works closely with the government at the national and the provincial level and with partners such as the National Employment Agency (NEA), public and non-governmental training providers as well as private companies and small enterprises in the hospitality and other sectors.
Colombia + Competitiva - Strengthening the Competitiveness of the Private Sector
The Programme aims to support Colombia in its systematic efforts to improve the competitiveness of its private sector in the framework of the National System of Competitiveness, Science, Technology and Innovation and its Productive Development Policy. "Colombia + Competitiva" follows a programmatic and systemic approach with clear ownership of the national and subnational entities and a significant contribution to their alignment and orientation towards common objectives. Currently the government is developing an overarching Productive Development Policy that defines the country’s competitiveness objectives, such as increase in productivity growth, exports, investments and numbers of innovative firms. The main objective is to support the country in achieving sustainable growth, and to reduce poverty and inequalities among its population. One focus lies on improving competitiveness of sectors with potential to create productive and decent employment. The programme supports a portfolio of projects in four sectors – tourism, cocoa, cosmetics/natural ingredients and sustainable construction building upon previous project experiences in the domain of private sector development and trade promotion as well as close consultation with Colombian partners.
Skills for Jobs (S4J)
Skills for Jobs (S4J) is a project of Swiss Agency for Development Cooperation (SDC) and is implemented by Swisscontact. The project is part of the Economic Development and Employment Domain of the Swiss Cooperation and Strategy 2018-2021 for Albania, with specific focus on employability. The main goal of ‘Skills for Jobs’ (S4J) project is to offer young people in Albania the best vocational education and training. Better skills will help young people to get a job that they love and that pays them well. More than 16,000 young people access improved VSD offers (IT-based, innovative and attractive, demand-oriented and gender-sensitive) in Tourism & Hospitality, Smart Construction, Textile, ICT and more branches in Shkodra, Lezha, Tirana, Elbasan, Berat and Vlora regions. Currently the second phase of the projects is ongoing (May 2019-June 2023).
Swiss Import Promotion Programme SIPPO
The Swiss Import Promotion Programme (SIPPO) is a longstanding, well-established initiative of the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) with the overall vision of sustainable and inclusive economic growth and integration of SIPPO partner countries into world trade, through its mission of supporting Business Support Organizations (so called BSOs - which includes public or private asociations, chambers of commerce, export promotion agencies, among others) to increase their export promotion capacity and service provision to export-ready companies. The project will operate in 6 sectors: Fish & seafood Processed foods Natural ingredients Technical wood Value-added textiles Sustainable tourism Since April 2017, SIPPO is being implemented under the direction of Swisscontact in partnership with BHP Brugger and Partners and Helvetas Swiss Intercooperation.
ProJoven : Vocational training for young people at risk of exclusion
The population of Honduras suffers from poverty, violence, corruption and unemployment. According to the National Statistics Institute of Honduras (INE), the unemployment rate is slightly over 7%; however, if the under-employment rate is added to this, it surpasses 40%, with young people comprising the largest group of unemployed. Furthermore, this group also faces the criminality of gangs and organised crime. Considering the lessons learned during the first phase of the ProJoven project (2013 - 2017), Swisscontact implements a second phase with the general objective of improving the effectiveness and coverage of the training system for vulnerable young people, through quality training that responds to the needs of the labour market and allows the employability of the young beneficiaries. For more information see links below.
WISATA Programme
WISATA, as a landmark program, was carried out in close cooperation with the Indonesian Ministry of Tourism and Creative Economy. The main goal of the program was to contribute to economic development through sustainable tourism, which creates employment and income to improve the livelihood of the local population. The programme was funded by the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) and carried out in close cooperation with the Indonesian Ministry of Tourism and in line with the national tourism development programme The WISATA programme, originally started in 2009 covering only the island of Flores. Due to the success of the first phase, it was decided that a second phase of the programme should start in June 2014, covering three additional destinations (Toraja, Tanjung Puting, and Wakatobi). Throughout this second phase, the approach, which was successfully developed and applied in Flores, was circulated. WISATA was carried out in close cooperation with the Indonesian Ministry of Tourism and in line with the national tourism development programme. The main goal of the programme was to contribute to economic development through sustainable tourism in order to create employment and income that can improve the livelihood of the local population.
Switzerland - Morocco sustainable tourism programme
Swisscontact implements the Swiss-Moroccan sustainable tourism programme which aims to support the provinces of Azilal and Beni Mellal in developing sustainable tourism with integrated sectors in order to reduce poverty, create income and new jobs and improve existing jobs, particularly for young people and women. The programme is financed by the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs SECO and the Kingdom of Morocco (Ministry of Tourism, Air Transport, Crafts and Social Economy). To learn more about the programme, follow the links below.
Our goal is to make Flores a leading eco-tourism destination in Southeast Asia
Through the WISATA programme in Indonesia, several Destination Management Organisations received support on various levels. Interview with DMO Flores and IWG Networks, WISATA project partner. The WISATA project, started in 2009, initially covered only the Indonesian island of Flores. Early success meant that three additional destinations were facilitated by WISATA in 2014. The initial set-up of the project was to support the establishment of a Destination Management Organisation (DMO) in Flores. Under the district Destination Management Forum, three Island Working Groups (IWGs) manage the coordination function among tourism stakeholders in each island level. IWG Networks and DMO Flores were asked about their experiences and advances within the WISATA project. Read here the interviews with DMO Flores and IWG Networks from Wakatobi. They want to develop their islands into leading eco-destinations in South East Asia.
Being young is not easy in Honduras: A story of the ProJoven project in Honduras
The story is about one of the young graduates of the ProJoven Programme. Most of the students in his class that graduated with him are working, says Moisés. However, he recognizes that the majority of the young people in his immediate environment, such as friends and family, have not been able to achieve their goals. "The person’s disposition and being able to find the support of someone who motivates you, is the most difficult thing to achieve. I feel that in Honduras, they rarely give young people the opportunity to grow. On top of that, the issue of violence aggravates everything "underlines Moisés while he finishes preparing coffee for a client. At only 21 years of age, Moisés Izaguirre already knows what he wants, "in five years I hope to have my own coffee business," he says determinedly. He trained as a waiter for seven months at the National Vocational Training Institute of San Felipe (INFOP), in Tegucigalpa, as part of the of the ProJoven program, which is financed by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (COSUDE) and implemented by Swisscontact.
NATURAL MACONDO Colombia Inspiration Ciénaga - The Capital of Magic Realism
Ciénaga is located on the Caribbean Sea below the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta mountain range in Colombia. It is known for its rich variety of landscapes and well-preserved architecture. Cienaga is focusing on developing ecological, cultural, and heritage tourism of indisputable value. The historic centre, an architectural mosaic featuring the church of San Juan Bautista, Centennial square, El Templete, the Freemason’ lodge, the “Devil’s House”, and a variety of republic-era buildings, testimony to the city’s old tobacco and banana booms, was declared a national heritage site in the early 1990s. The project aims to promote the "Macondo Natural" tourism product, which will be sold by the beneficiaries. This will be accomplished by improvements in the value chain, particularly creating service and marketing capacity with special attention to international tourists. In addition, special emphasis will be placed on destination management and the design of a public-private platform in order to promote the product online. “What matters in life is not what happens to you but what you remember and how you remember it.” Gabriel Garcia Marquez
How a “green job” connects different generations through their love for the environment and stories
If you travel along the canals, green tunnels snake through the mangrove forests, sunlight peaks through the leaves offering beautiful natural lighting. You feel like you are in a surrealistic place. Your are going into the real landscapes of 100 years of solitude. You are getting to Macondo Natural. The Salamanca Island Road Park has been declared a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. Across a 56,200 hectare wetland, it features three ecosystems: a mangrove forest, a tropical riparian forest, and tropical dry broadleaf forest. A canoe tour takes you through the canals, with their Aguja caymans and fiddler crabs, to Ciénaga de Marchena. With a surface area of 450 km2, it is Colombia’s largest coastal lagoon and a bird paradise with over 200 species. This is a story of the intervention in this territory carried out through the Colombia + Competitive program, financed by the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) and implemented by Swisscontact.
Learn, Earn and Save (U-LEARN II)
The U-LEARN Project targets economically, socially and academically disadvantaged youth between the ages of 18 and24 years from families living below or slightly above the national poverty line of $1.90 a day. It is implemented in 14 districts in the Mwanza and Mara regions of Tanzania and 11 districts in the Central, East and Western regions of Uganda. The project focuses on three broad sectors. These are agri-business, building and construction and tourism and hospitality. These sectors are fast growing and require more locally skilled personnel to meet demand and enhance growth. The project is guided by a unique youth and market-driven learning group model. Youth, particularly young women, are engaged in all aspects of the project, including design, implementation, and management. Swisscontact acts as a market facilitator; building capacity within local institutions to deliver relevant training, business, and employment services to the youth. Through learning groups, Swisscontact offers a holistic package including technical and vocational skills training, business support services, market access and linkages, social and healthy living skills training, and financial service support. To learn more about the programme, follow the links below. The programme is financed by the Mastercard Foundation
Destination Mapping, Analysis and Strategic Action Planning in in Guyana
In November 2018, the Swisscontact Tourism Advisory Services and Trainings team executed an assignment in the South American country of Guyana, contracted by the Guyana Tourism Authority (GTA). Objectives of the assignment were on-the-job training for strategic destination assessment, training for a “Living Destination Development & Management Action Plan (LiDDMAP)” and the anchoring of this knowledge through capacity building, structure and guidance, for selected staff and partners of GTA. The focus of the assessment process were two destinations: The capital of Georgetown and its surroundings and the Rupununi Savannah in the South of the country.
Development also brings change
Swisscontact implemented the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs’ WISATA project in Indonesia since 2010. The objective was to develop first one, then four tourism destinations, thereby creating the conditions for more jobs and better income opportunities. Ruedi Nuetzi directed the project since the very beginning, before closing it down in summer 2018. Read the interview with him here:
Empowering Women in Myanmar’s Hospitality Sector
Swisscontact, financed by SDC and in partnership with hotels in four of Myanmar’s tourism hotspots, started the Hotel Training Initiative in September 2014. Part of the Vocational Skills Development Programme, the courses offer disadvantaged women and men a chance to learn needed job skills, while supplying much-needed skilled workers to the areas’ hospitality industry. This story is about three women who are full of perspectives for their lives thanks to the training.
Tourism Impacts in Labuan Bajo, Flores, Indonesia
Like so many other places before it, Labuan Bajo on the Indonesian island of Flores is undergoing the metamorphosis from a quite harbour and fishing town to a busting tourism destination. Vastly growing numbers of tourists travel to Labuan Bajo in order to hop on a boat and take a trip to Komodo National Park. Indonesia’s central government has recognised the potential of the destination and is determined to boost its development. It wants “10 new Balis” to rise until 2020 and Labuan Bajo is supposed to be one of them. To reach this goal visitor numbers are targeted to grow to 500,000, which is a fivefold increase within four years. The intense plan of the central government is based on a common conception of tourism as a driver for development and poverty reduction. However, experience over decades of tourism growth all over the world has proven that the expected ‘trickle-down-effect’ does not actualise. Undeniably tourism development is a double-edged sword. This impact assessment aims to put the governmental development plans for Labuan Bajo in perspective by describing the current state of development and emerging trends as well as existing benefits and pitfalls along the triple bottom line of sustainability.
Comunity-based Tourism in Flores Impacts and Carrying Capacity
The research of this report describes the perception of the tourism development in three communities in different locations across the island of Flores in Indonesia. Two of the communities are traditional villages. The third is a typical Flores farming community. The research answers the following questions: Which impacts are important to the communities and how is the current situation with regard to each of these impacts? How sustainable is the tourism development and did the communities become depend on the new benefits? What can the people not tolerate to happen in their communities? Has the carrying capacity in terms of visitor numbers, acceptance of changes and livelihood transition been overstepped? The study considered 44 different factors in order to evaluate the impact of tourism development on the communities.