For the third edition of the Journey for Change program, Transat has partnered with Iberostar Hotels & Resorts and the University of Guelph’s School of Hospitality, Food and Tourism Management for an international field study program that provides 12 students with a unique experience in the Dominican Republic.
The goal of this initiative is to offer a unique hands-on experience for tomorrow's leaders in sustainable travel.
“Sustainable travel is at the heart of Transat's corporate responsibility strategy, and I’m pleased to see that the next generation is already sensitive to these issues,” said Chrystal Healy, vice president, corporate responsibility at Transat. “In addition, I’m particularly proud to partner with Iberostar this year, a brand who’s known for its concrete efforts in sustainable development. We believe in the power of numbers and hope that students will return from their stay with a renewed desire to get involved in social and environmental issues, both at home and abroad.”
The program includes a rich variety of topics and workshops, including responsible sourcing, food waste prevention and composting, coral reef rehabilitation, mangrove planting, beach clean-ups, and community centre visits.
“The strength of Journey for Change is that the destination is the classroom. Students learn about sustainable tourism while experiencing being a tourist themselves. They see first-hand the challenges that Transat and Iberostar are tackling. And together, we can find solutions to advance responsible travel,” added Dr. Statia Elliot, professor at the School of Hospitality, Food & Tourism Management – University of Guelph.
“At Iberostar, we view sustainability as a core principle that drives and guides our business. We are committed to transforming the way people perceive travel and are constantly innovating to inspire our guests to join us in creating a better future. We are delighted to welcome students from Journey for Change, as they can learn about our responsible tourism practices and discover that there are always solutions to be found. During their visit to the Coral Lab, they will gain insight into how coral studies can aid in overcoming the challenges that climate change poses to reefs,” added Gabriel Martorell, sustainability director for the Americas at Iberostar.
The first Journey for Change trip took place in spring 2019 in Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic.
Both previous editions have provided an opportunity to meet local communities and tourism service providers, and to learn about the complex issues inherent in sustainable tourism at the destination.