DestinationsUrgent call for ‘Healing Solutions’ to rescue tourism sector

UNWTO challenges innovators and entrepreneurs to find solutions for a crisis

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Bright ideas wanted to help tourism get back on its feet.
Bright ideas wanted to help tourism get back on its feet. Photo Credit: Vaselena/iStock/Getty Images Plus

MADRID – Calling all innovators and entrepreneurs. Tourism needs you. Right now. Like never before.

In particular, we want to hear ideas that will help communities recover from this crisis, economically and socially, as well as ideas that can contribute to the public health response.– UNWTO Secretary-General Zurab Pololikashvili

The call is coming from the World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO), with the support of the World Health Organisation (WHO), which is seeking quick solutions to help the tourism sector recover from COVID-19.

Called “Healing Solutions” the challenge is for entrepreneurs and innovators to submit ideas that can help the tourism sector mitigate the impact of the pandemic and kickstart recovery efforts.

“In particular, the challenge is aimed at finding ideas that can make a difference right away: for destinations, for businesses and for public health efforts. Ideas that are ready to implement,” says UNWTO.

Participants should be able to demonstrate how their ideas can help tourism in its response to COVID-19. Ideas must also have been piloted and be ready to scale-up, with a business plan in place and the potential to be implemented in several countries.

UNWTO Secretary-General Zurab Pololikashvili said, “Tourism is the sector that has been hit the hardest by COVID-19. Our response needs to be strong and united.

“We also need to embrace innovation. I call on all entrepreneurs and innovators with ideas that are developed and ready to be put into action to share them with us.

“In particular, we want to hear ideas that will help communities recover from this crisis, economically and socially, as well as ideas that can contribute to the public health response.”

The competition is  live and applications close on April 10, 2020. The winners of the Healing Solutions for Tourism Challenge will be invited to pitch their ideas to representatives of more than 150 governments.

They will also enjoy access to the UNWTO Innovation Network, which includes hundreds of start-ups and leading businesses from across the tourism sector.

More information on the competition and on how to apply can be found at the Healing Solutions for Tourism Challenge webpage: https://www.unwto.org/healing-solutions-tourism-challenge

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