DOT Renews Grants to Grassroots Sector

As ecotourism becomes a major dynamic particularly for rural areas in Asia, the Department of Tourism (DOT) has renewed its call to award grants to viable projects in the grassroots sector.

Under the program GREET or Grassroots Entrepreneurship and Employment in Tourism, the DOT will give assistance in forms of financial aid, provision of skills, knowledge, values formation and other entitlements to projects and programs that espouse environmental sustainability in concerned regions throughout the country.

“Tourism is our major economic resource and we have to look ahead into the sustainability of this wealth. Espousing ecotourism, and guiding community members to the role, are some of our main objectives,” cited Tourism Secretary Ace Durano.

Launched in 2007, the program has allocated close to P17M to beneficiaries nationwide.

Fifty percent of the grant budget for CY2010 will be given to new projects while the rest will be allocated to further assist or expand implemented projects.

Approval of grants follows a system, according to DOT Undersecretary Eduardo Jarque, Jr., Co-Chair of the GREET Task Force. “The DOT regional offices identify supply gaps of tourism products and services in their areas first, after which proposals will be shortlisted based on the guidelines approved by the Committee.”

Categories of approved grants have been classified as tour facilities/equipment, Food and Beverage, Homestay, Tour Guiding, Livelihood (Trade/ Agri-related), Accommodation, Transportation, Education, Infra Improvement and Environmental Conservation.

Priorities are given to proposals which enhance livelihood opportunities preferably for promising young entrepreneurs who can best explore a destination’s tourism potentials through viable environmental sustainability.

The implementing body is coursed through the Turismo Mismo program which ensures the proper implementation and use of the grant, following its “Nature + Nurture” advocacy.

Interested applicants may fill out forms available from the DOT Regional Offices, Municipal offices or download from the website

Source: Department of Tourism