The Ghana Tourism Authority under the auspices of the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture has partnered the Tourism Society of Ghana (TOSOGHA) to launch Tourism Clubs in Educational Institutions in Ghana at the Accra Tourist Information Centre on Tuesday, 20th June, 2023.
The initiative is under the theme, Rejuvenating Tourism Clubs in Educational Institutions and Sub-themed Tourism Clubs, a Relevant Channel for Rethinking Domestic Tourism This is to inculcate into school children the need to travel and encourage tourism clubs in the educational institutions to help project Ghana as the preferred tourist destination both locally and internationally through the domestic tourism campaign, dubbed Experience Ghana, Share Ghana.
In attendance were Mr. Seth Agyei Baah, the Board Chair of GTA, who represented the Hon. Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture, Hon. Dr. Ibrahim Mohammed Awal, Hon. Gifty Twum Ampofo, Deputy Minister for Education (TVET), Mr. Ekow Sampson, Deputy CEO of GTA, Operations, Madam Benedicta Yevu, Director of Culture, Ghana Education Service, Dr. Kwesi Eyison, Vice President of GHATOF, Dr. Edward Ackah Nyameke Jnr. President of Ghana Hotels Association, Rev. Gyedda Essandoh, President of Ghana Progressive Hotels Association, Mrs. Alisa Osei Asamoah, President of Tour Operators Union of Ghana, Mr. Seth Ocran, President of Car Rentals Association of Ghana. Nana Okatakyie Anim I, President of the Royal Chiefs Association, Nii Quaye Annang II, Teshie Akwashongtse, Mr. Jones Nelson, Director of Corporate Affairs. Others include stakeholders in the tourism and hospitality value chain, representatives from GTA, Ministry of Education, the Ghana Education Service among others.
In his welcome speech, the Executive Director of Tourism Society of Ghana, Mr. Joseph Amartey stated, ‘due to the outbreak of COVID-19, most of the vibrant tourism clubs became dormant, but in recent times, it has became very necessary to rejuvenate these clubs in all the regions’
Mr. Ekow Sampson, in his statement urged all stakeholders to support this laudable initiative, as they all have a role to play in promoting domestic tourism and helping in rejuvenating tourism clubs in educational institutions. He said , ‘Ghana relies on the tourism sector for growth as it creates revenue for the country and also helps in the development of infrastructure’. ‘A strong domestic tourist market is a base for a strong hospitality industry and a foundation of good transport services among other things. Therefore, rejuvenating tourism clubs in educational institutions, will help the students learn more about the attractions in the country thereby creating a sense of urgency in them to visit these sites through school trips and enhance national cohesion as they tend to learn history and culture of others’, Mr. Sampson reiterated.
Madam Benedicta Yevu stated that ‘tourism contributes to Ghana’s economy as it generates foreign exchange, creates job opportunities. There is therefore the need to inculcate in the youth and the next generation what tourism is and its importance and contribution to national economy’. More attention will therefore be paid by schools and relevant stakeholders in promoting domestic tourism and existing tourist sites will be developed to be appealing to those who may patronize them, she reiterated.
Mr. Seth Agyei Baah, also laid emphasis on how important tourism is and therefore the need to rejuvenate tourism clubs in educational institutions. He challenged school children to focus on the need to engage in tourism and its contribution to national development.
The Deputy Minister of Education, Hon. Gifty Twum Ampofo, in her statement said, ‘although we are seeking to rejuvenate tourism clubs in educational institutions, we all should work collectively to develop these tourist sites and make it more appealing for the students to revisit them’.
Members of the new Governing Board of the Tourism Society of Ghana were sworn into office. They include Mr. Joseph Amartey, TOSOGHA, Mr. Charles Buabin, GTA, Mr. Ahmed Naaman, Dodi Travel and Tours, Madam Esther Appau, Ghana Police Service, and Ms. Hannah Asiedu, TOSOGHA as the Board Secretary.
The launch and inauguration of board members were jointly performed by Hon. Seth Agyei Baah and Hon. Gifty Twum Ampofo.
By Corporate Affairs Department, GTA