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Duavata Collective: Bridging Tourism With Tradition

We know that local and international guests are interested in a deeper connection with people and places when they visit - so we hope that in the future there will be many more operators like ourselves who are interested in growing slowly and sustainably
19 Jan 2021 12:42
Duavata Collective: Bridging Tourism With Tradition
Rivers Fiji in Navua is also a member of Duavata Collective.

The Duavata Collective emerged as a network of 12 like-minded tourism operators who all have sustainable practices as part of their core values.

Environmental sustainability is a core part of it.

Collective secretary, Marita Manley, who is also the owner of Talanoa Treks said the collective was like a bridge between culture, tradition, and tourism.

“Part of it is ensuring cultural heritage sustainability too,” said Ms Manley.

“The tourism sector has the potential to have a negative influence on culture and traditional practices, so we are careful to make sure that our operations reinforce traditional practices.

“Similarly, sustainability has to mean sustainability from a social perspective- things have to work for the communities we work with.

“We are all small operators, but believe and hope that this is the future of tourism.

“We know that local and international guests are interested in a deeper connection with people and places when they visit – so we hope that in the future there will be many more operators like ourselves who are interested in growing slowly and sustainably.”

The collective started in 2017 with Leleuvia, Rivers Fiji and Talanoa Treks writing joint budget submissions.

“We all felt as though the voices of smaller operators weren’t necessarily being heard,” Ms Manley said.

“In 2018, we decided to form a network and we have grown from there to expand to 12 members.”

 

If you want to join

They’ve developed a value statement, where all members must subscribe through https://www.duavatasustainabletourism.org/.

The link give examples of the various values members must demonstrate throughout their businesses.

 

Leadership and Tradition

Duavata promotes the leadership and traditional practices of resource owners in managing their vanua, including conservation  Leadership programme.

 

Eco Experiences

Duavata offers experiences that are founded on and interconnected with the environment and its conservation.

 

Cultural Heritage

Duavata collection strives to integrate cultural heritage and cultural industries into our experiences.

 

Learning

Duavata see travel as a learning experience and a respectful exchange of ideas.

 

Give More

The 12-members expect guests to give back more than they take.

 

Enhancing Resources

“We’re not based on a geographic area as the thing that connects us is our values.

“Any new members must be nominated by an existing member.”

Ms Manley said,“2020 was obviously a difficult year for everyone, but we were inspired at the number of urban Fijians re-connecting with different parts of the country.

“By doing things they might not otherwise do – rafting the Upper Navua, hiking through the interior, diving and so on.

“This year, we’re working to launch a Duavata Conservation Leadership Programme to help connect young conservation leaders to nature-based experiences.”

Feedback: susana.tuilau@fijisun.com.fj

 

 

 


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