Polistovsky Reserve at the Forum for Socially Responsible Tourism
Representatives of Polistovsky Reserve took part in the first Forum of Socially Responsible Tourism "#Help while traveling!" in Pskov with a presentation about its experience in the development of sustainable eco-tourism.
At the plenary session, tourism specialist Margarita Morozova spoke about the principles of sustainable development of ecological, cognitive tourism and how it works in practice in Polistovsky Reserve. Great attention in the Reserve is paid to building up cooperative relations with the local community. At the same time, protection of their own nature becomes beneficial to the local community, people have the opportunity to participate in the development of ecological and agro-tourism, as well as got an incentive to preserve the historical and cultural heritage.
The event was attended by representatives of public organizations, public authorities, protected natural areas, museums and tourism business, interested in the development of socially responsible tourism in the region. Participants exchanged ideas and experience in promoting the principles of responsible tourism: respect for the environment, support for the local community, the beneficial impact of tourism on the economic, environmental, socio-cultural condition of the region.
"It is very gratifying that so many different organizations, like us, are working to promote responsible tourism. Colleagues and experts raised really interesting issues. It was useful to discuss the problems common to many organizations jointly and try to find solutions. For example, the evaluation of recreational capacity of territories and anthropogenic load on natural landscapes, and organization of children's cognitive tourism.
Great experience was presented by Kostomuksha Reserve. Thanks to the status of the UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, relations between the protected area with the region are strengthening, there is a constant cooperation with the local and regional structures, there are more opportunities for supporting the local community, implementing socially significant projects... So, Polistovsky Reserve has room for improvement in this direction," Margarita Morozova shares her impressions.
The Forum was organized by the State Committee for Culture of Pskov Region and the "Center for Innovations in the Social Sphere of Pskov Region" with the assistance of the International Center for Responsible Tourism and the Union of Responsible Tourism Participants. A resolution with proposals for the development of socially responsible tourism for the Government of the Russian Federation, executive and local authorities, tour operators, busines and NGOs will be prepared based on the results of the Forum.
In parallel with the Forum, there was a fair-sale of products of socially responsible manufacturers and goods of sustainable tourism from Pskov region. Also there was an exhibition of the best works of the all-Russian photo contest "#Help while traveling!", one of the finalists of which was a photo taken in Polistovsky Reserve by a participant of the volunteer project of the Russian geographical society in 2017.