The Ministry of Tourism and Cultural Affairs (MTCA), and its implementing agency, the National Tourist Board (NTB), have concluded a week long training of trainers’ workshop for public and private sector workers in the tourism industry.
The workshop which was climaxed by the certification of 50 participants was funded by the Enhanced Integrated Framework (EIF) Tier 2 project and a government of Sierra Leone counterpart funding.
The training workshop was facilitated by two Canadian Tourism Experts from the Ted Rogers School of Tourism Management in Canada. The idea was to training the 50 carefully selected participants on the fundamental principles of professional hospitality practices and the trainees will in turn transfer the knowledge gained to their respective institutions.
The Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Edward Kwame Yankson said the training was in resonance with President Bio’s human capital development initiative which the Tourism Ministry will continue to pursue.
The Lead Trainer, Professor Fergus Maclaren from the Ted Rogers University in Canada thanked the Ministry and the Board for the opportunity saying that it was an honour and privilege to be in the country as he has learnt a lot about the Sierra Leonean culture and values. He applauded the participants for their willingness and desire towards the week long training and encouraged them to utilise and transfer the knowledge acquired to their various institutions.
The Honorary Consul for Canada in Sierra Leone, Kofie Macauley noted that key among the benefits of the training is the coordination and friendship between Sierra Leone and Canada.
He said Sierra Leone has enormous tourism potentials which training of this nature can help harness. He thanked the Ministry and the Board for such initiative while calling on all Sierra Leoneans to make the most of the country’s rich tourism potentials.
Presenting the certificates to the participants, the Minister of Tourism and Cultural Affairs, Dr. Memunatu Pratt said it has been a long journey which started four years ago and thanked the Enhanced Integrated Framework (EIF) and a government counterpart funding for making this happen.
She mentioned that they are now energised and believed that Sierra Leone can be one of the best destinations in the world. She highlighted the numerous strides made by the Ministry over the past four years.
She said the training was critical and called the teachers, lecturers, professors and leaders that were trained to lead the change in changing the tourism narrative.
She disclosed that they will continue to build the capacity of sector workers in their five-year human resource training plan through the World Bank. She concluded by calling on the trainees to be tourism ambassadors and lead the change they want to see in the sector.