Tourism Networking Conference to precede Expo

The seminars will focus on the theme of the 2018 Namibia Tourism Expo, “Conservation - Small things matter”.

25 April 2018 | Events

I want to raise the spectre of the industry doing more in tangible ways. – Keith Sproule, Executive Director: Abercrombie & Kent Philanthropy

Staff Reporter - The local and regional tourism community are all looking forward to the 20th edition of the ever-popular Namibia Tourism Expo which will be held from 30 May to 3 June at the Windhoek show grounds.

This year, there is a special treat for tourism stakeholders and conservationists alike. On 29 May, one day before the expo kicks off, a Tourism Networking Conference will be held at the Safari Hotel and Conference Centre. Five seminars will be presented, all focusing on the theme of the 2018 expo, “Conservation - Small things matter”. The environment and tourism minister Pohamba Shifeta will officially open the 1st Tourism Networking Conference.

The key speaker at the event, Keith W. Sproule, will be discussing ways and means for both tour operators and travellers to impact the lives and livelihoods of the communities they visit. “I want to raise the spectre of the industry doing more in tangible ways,” Sproule says. In his view, very small steps and elements can lead to a wave of change in different ways.

Sproule has worked in the Namibian tourism industry for five years. He says he remains “a ferocious fan of anything associated with the land of the brave”.

Sproule is a strong advocate for the Namibian community-based resource management model, especially joint venture lodges, as a viable strategy for rural communities to access the economic benefits from the tourism industry. He is especially proud to have helped Namibia secure the opportunity to host the Adventure Travel World Summit in 2013.

Background

Currently serving as the executive director of Abercrombie & Kent Philanthropy (AKP), a leading private sector travel philanthropy with the mission to “help nature thrive and cultures to flourish”, Sproule manages a portfolio of AKP investments in 20 countries, with a total annual budget over US$2 500 000.

His professional background includes serving as an advisor to governments on three continents and operations consulting with hotel and tourism companies globally. He has worked in Asia, Africa, Central Europe, the Middle East and the Americas.

Sproule has a Bachelor of Science degree from the College of Agriculture at the University of Vermont, and has completed a Master’s degree in international economics at Johns Hopkins University School for Advanced International Studies (SAIS). He was a Fulbright Scholar in Belize, studying the expenditure patterns of visitors to archaeological sites.

Five other speakers will be hosting different topics at the conference. Keep an eye out on these pages in the coming weeks as we tell you more.

Interested parties can send an email to [email protected] or log on to nte.nmh.com.na for more details.

The Tourism Networking Conference is proudly brought to you by Namibia Media Holdings, First National Bank and Old Mutual.

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