To upgrade the standard of living of the local people, it was imperative that a major part of the revenue generated from tourism reach them. Ensuring the participation of the local community in the supply of goods and services was the one of the ways to achieve this goal.
Thus, the RT initiative was kicked off with vegetable cultivation by the locals. Kudumbasree (self-help groups of women) were involved in the cultivation and for the procurement, supply and delivery of the produce, Samrudhi Responsibility Tourism Activity groups were formed. The Grama Panchayat also formed a Price Fixing Committee and Quality Committee. GITPAC International is the technical agency for managing the competitive bidding process.
The vegetables were supplied to about 15 hotels in Kumarakom, including luxury ones. There is a roaring demand for the vegetables as they come fresh and are grown organically. Farmers and self help groups were encouraged to produce for commercial supply fish, chicken, egg and agricultural produce. Soon they began to be involved in other tourism-related activities and services that brought them extra money.
Though the Kudumbasree started with vegetable cultivation, it didn’t take long for them to diversify into other areas. Micro-enterprises under the Kudumbasree units now produce paper bags, processed food, local snacks, rice powder and handicrafts all of which have a market in the bustling tourist spot. These small-scale industries along with the tourism industry have brought prosperity to the local people.
|The Success Mantra - Community Participation||RT - Social Responsibility|