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Governor Pacquiao prioritizes communities in tourism development
MALAPATAN, Sarangani -- In line with the governance direction of Governor Rogelio "Ruel" D. Pacquiao to involve the community in the economic development of the province, the Provincial Tourism Office conducted a Community-Based Tourism (CBT) organization assessment and profiling in Malapatan on July 22.
Provincial Tourism Officer April Marjorie P. Rudes, together with some staff from the municipal tourism office of Malapatan, went to Purok Jolohano in Barangay Sapu Masla to confer with some members of the Jolohano women’s association.
The conversation centered on the potential tourism developments, including some skills training that could be introduced in the community.
Rudes explained that the purpose of the CBT is to identify possible communities in Sarangani that can be developed to be tourism sites and enterprises.
Once established, the CBTs would also help ensure the local communities have full ownership and management of the tourism experience so that the economic benefits will stay within their community.
Rudes said the criteria for CBT should have natural and cultural resources and "preferably have an existing association."
She added that areas without any existing organizations can still be considered "dahil diyan papasok yung ating tulong to hone them to be established and generate an economic gain in the area."
The provincial and municipal local governments will also do their part by providing funds for necessary infrastructure like buildings, bridges, and roads.
Aside from Purok Jolohano in Malapatan, the Provincial Tourism Office also targets to conduct the CBT profiling and assessment in Barangays New La Union and Tuanadatu in Maitum; Sitios Falel and Tamlob in Kiamba; Barangay Datal Basak in Maasim; Barangay Pait in Alabel; Barangays Small Margus and Datal Bukay in Glan; and the Tagakaulo community in Malungon.
Ladol Beach in Barangay Ladol, Alabel, and Lamlifew School of Living Traditions in Barangay Datal Tampal, Malungon were among the first CBTs in Sarangani.
Under the administration of Governor Pacquiao, together with Congressman Steve Chiongbian Solon, Vice Governor Elmer De Peralta, and the rest of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan members, the Provincial Tourism Office would concentrate on the communities to be included in the economic agenda of the province. (Joshua John S. Pantonial and photos by Jake T. Narte/SARANGANI PROVINCIAL INFORMATION OFFICE)