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Airbnb awards US$250,000 sustainability grant to UWI-hosted Global Tourism Resilience Centre

For Release Upon Receipt - February 17, 2023


The UWI Regional Headquarters. Jamaica, W.I. Thursday, February 16, 2023—The Global Tourism Resilience and Crisis Management Centre (GTRCMC), hosted by The University of the West Indies (The UWI) was recently announced as a recipient of a sustainability grant from Airbnb, the online marketplace for short-term homestays and experiences.

 The Centre was awarded US$250,000 as part of Airbnb’s Community Fund to support sustainability and conservation programs. Launched in 2020, the Fund aims to distribute US$100 million through 2030 to help strengthen communities around the world.

 The US$250,000 grant will be used to support the Building Climate Knowledge, Attitudes and Awareness across the Caribbean (Project: C-KAP) led by the Centre, to help raise awareness among Caribbean Micro, Small and Medium Sized Tourism Entrepreneurs (MSMEs) about the importance of climate-responsible practices in their operations, as well as encourage them to take urgent action to combat climate change.

 Project C-KAP’s overall goal is to assess research/monitor, plan for, forecast, mitigate, and manage risks related to tourism resilience and crisis management. This will be achieved through four objectives which include research and development; policy advocacy and communication management; programme/project design and management as well as training and capacity building.

 A statement on behalf of the Centre’s Board of Governors noted, “We are excited to partner with Airbnb whose climate action corporate sustainability framework (which is committed to making Airbnb a Net Zero company by 2030), is in sync with one of the GTRCMC’s mandates; that is, building tourism resilience capacities for climate action and for global sustainability.”

 Professor Sir Hilary Beckles, Vice-Chancellor of The UWI is among the Centre’s Board of Governors, together with Professor Lloyd Waller from The UWI who also serves as Executive Director and the Honourable Edmund Bartlett, Jamaica’s Minister of Tourism.

 Within the Centre’s workplan is the hosting its inaugural conference, the Global Tourism Resilience Conference—from February 15 to 17, 2023 at The UWI’s Regional Headquarters in Mona, Jamaica. The conference is a first of its kind, a three‐day event, designed to bring the global tourism community together to discuss investment opportunities, discuss and debate solutions to today’s most pressing challenges, and increase cooperation for greater global resilience across the industry.

 On the opening day of the conference, the Centre officially launched Global Tourism Resilience Day, which was initiated by Professor Lloyd Waller and designated by The United Nations General Assembly as an annual observance on February 17.


Related news:

UWI Professor among key drivers of UN declared Global Tourism Resilience Day

About The University of the West Indies

The UWI has been and continues to be a pivotal force in every aspect of Caribbean development; residing at the centre of all efforts to improve the well-being of people across the region for the past 75 years.

From a university college of London in Jamaica with 33 medical students in 1948, The UWI is today an internationally respected, global university with near 50,000 students and five campuses: Mona in Jamaica, St. Augustine in Trinidad and Tobago, Cave Hill in Barbados, Five Islands in Antigua and Barbuda and its Open Campus, and global centres in partnership with universities in North America, Latin America, Asia, Africa and Europe.

The UWI offers over 800 certificate, diploma, undergraduate and postgraduate degree options in Culture, Creative and Performing Arts, Food and Agriculture, Engineering, Humanities and Education, Law, Medical Sciences, Science and Technology, Social Sciences, and Sport. As the Caribbean’s leading university, it possesses the largest pool of Caribbean intellect and expertise committed to confronting the critical issues of our region and wider world.

The UWI has been consistently ranked among the top universities globally by the most reputable ranking agency, Times Higher Education (THE). The UWI is the only Caribbean-based university to make the prestigious lists since its debut in the rankings in 2018. In addition to its leading position in the Caribbean in the World University Rankings, it is also in the top 25 for Latin America and the Caribbean and the top 100 global Golden Age universities (between 50 and 80 years old).  The UWI is also featured among the leading universities on THE’s Impact Rankings for its response to the world’s biggest concerns, outlined in the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), including Good Health and Wellbeing; Gender Equality and Climate Action.

2023 marks The UWI’s 75th anniversary. The Diamond jubilee milestone themed “UWI at 75. Rooted. Ready. Rising.” features initiatives purposely designed and aligned to reflect on the past, confront the present, and articulate plans for the future of the regional University.


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