The People’s Participation for Participatory Planning and Empowerment through Responsible Tourism (PEPPER) initiative rolled out by Kerala Tourism will be extended to the second phase to 12 new centres across Kerala.

A Kerala Tourism source said that PEPPER will be rolled out in two local self-government institutions at Vaikom in Kottayam district and 10 other centres.  The project runs alongside Kerala Tourism’s Responsible Tourism mission, whereby farmers, artisans, artists, entrepreneurs of farm-stays as well as home-stays and tour guides are involved.

Responsible Tourism, with 11,532 units under the mission, has been actively involved in efforts towards poverty alleviation, women empowerment and local area development over the past year. The units have spread their operations to places across the state, including the remote belts of upstate Kannur and Kasaragod districts, besides the key RT spots of Kumarakom, Thekkady and Wayanad.

The mission’s initiatives have already fetched Kerala Tourism several international recognitions, including the maiden gold medal at the prestigious World Travel Market (WTM) in London.

By Manoj

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