The VA TourismPodcast
Breaking down the Year of Return Numbers and Delving into  Beyond the Return Project- A Conversation with Akwasi Agyeman

Breaking down the Year of Return Numbers and Delving into Beyond the Return Project- A Conversation with Akwasi Agyeman

September 22, 2020

In this episode, my Guest, one of the main architects of the hugely successful Year of Return, Ghana 2019 campaign Akwasi Agyeman, CEO of the Ghana Tourism Authority continues his pivotal role as the Coordinator of the Beyond the return initiative, a 10-year ambitious plan pivoted on 7 pillars gives an overview of last year’s event, and delves into the inspiration for the new project. 

Akwasi Agyeman, is the CEO of the Ghana Tourism Authority, the lead Public Service Agency in charge of regulating tourism in Ghana through marketing and promotion, licensing and classification of tourism facilities and services, investments, research and development. Prior to his appointment in January 2017, he was a shareholding partner of Global Media Alliance, a Media Consultancy and broadcasting company. As the Managing Director of its broadcasting operations, he was in charge of one TV Station and four radio stations. Until recently, he was the President of the Ghana Independent Broadcasters Association (GIBA). He holds an MBA in Marketing and Information Systems from Tulane University in Louisiana (2003), USA – an MBA Merit Scholarship Recipient. He also holds a Bachelors's degree in Social Sciences (1993) and a Masters in Public Administration (MPA -1996) from the University of Ghana.

He has over 15 years’ experience in Project Management, Crisis Communications, PR and Media Relations, Banking, and Relationship Management across Africa and has worked in senior-level capacities with Ecobank, Merchant Bank, Stanbic Bank in South Africa. Prior to joining GMA as a founding partner in Ghana, Akwasi was a Business Analyst for Entergy Inc. in New Orleans, USA.

Akwasi was recently awarded at the Radio and TV Personality awards for his outstanding contribution to Media Excellence in Ghana. He is a devout Christian and a devoted family man with three children.

VA Tourism NewsWrap18

VA Tourism NewsWrap18

September 21, 2020

The VA #TourismNewsWrap18 is a 360 roundup of the latest news in the Travel and Tourism sector. It sums up what you missed the previous week. The video captures, in brief, the major stories. Headlines: •112th UNWTO Executive Council Meeting Concludes in Tbilisi//2020 WTM London Moves Online //South Africa Announces Reopening of International Borders from Oct 1// Qatar Airways to Launch Four Weekly Flights to Ghana//Best Job Ever Tourism Documentary Premieres//Ethiopian Airlines Resume Daily Flights to Accra// ATLF  Set for Hybrid Event in Kigali More news on www.voyagesafriq.com

CEO of AvacoMornami ,Victor Constantino gives an insight on Restarting Tourism  in Cabo Verde

CEO of AvacoMornami ,Victor Constantino gives an insight on Restarting Tourism in Cabo Verde

September 20, 2020

In this conversation, Victor Constantino, CEO of Avaco Mornami takes a swipe at the Cabo Verde Government’s approach to restart the tourism sector and advises the Country’s Tourism Ministry to engage private sector stakeholders to develop practical and sustainable solutions in order to mitigate the effects of the pandemic on the sector. 

Victor holds Post-Graduate in Management and Master in Management (Dakar -Senegal) and Project Manager SAPM (Stanford-USA). Graduated in Economics from Cheikh Anta Diop University (Dakar-Senegal). In the professional field, with sixteen years (16) of experience and already taken relevant positions in companies in Cabo Verde, I give lectures and conferences on business management and Strategic Planning, Leadership and Project Preparation & Implementation. He organized 3 times the Global Entrepreneurship Weekend (GEW). 

In 2013 after the 1st Cabo Verdean Young Executives Training Course for Leadership, promoted by the Pedro Pires Institute for Leadership, he participated in the Summer Course on Leadership in the USA being part of the top 10 first course for Cabo Verdean executives. Victor worked as a Senior Consultant at the Strategic Policy Centre which is a Think Thank attached to the Office of the Prime Minister of Cabo Verde.

African Aviation Expert, Fadimatou Simo wants to leverage Aviation and Tourism to Create Sustainable Jobs for the Youth in Cameroon and the CEMAC Region

African Aviation Expert, Fadimatou Simo wants to leverage Aviation and Tourism to Create Sustainable Jobs for the Youth in Cameroon and the CEMAC Region

September 18, 2020

In this episode, the Founder of YAAPA Fadimatou Noutchemo Simo believes the pandemic has offered Cameroon a fine opportunity to reinvent its tourism and aviation sectors. Fadi has also launched her AviaTour project which seeks to train and offer sustainable job opportunities for the youth in Cameroon and the CEMAC Region.

Fadimatou Noutchemo SIMO is Founder and President of the YOUNG AFRICAN AVIATION PROFESSIONAL ASSOCIATION (YAAPA) and HEFA Group her aviation consultancy firm that also specializes in promoting travel, tour, and trade globally. Winner of the IATA High Flyer Award 2019, the Commonwealth point of light 2019, and the AFCAC Recognition certificate for promoting the industry to the NextGen, she holds a Bachelor’s degree in Economics and an IATA diploma for airline management.

 She founded YAAPA in 2014 a nonprofit organization to educate youths through communication on aviation careers, as well as create a platform of exchange between the aviation stakeholders and the next generation of aviation professionals in Africa to meet up with the future demand of skilled workers in the industry.
Fadi is a member of the women in Aviation International Organization and actively promotes gender equality across the continent by advocating for stakeholders to invest more in human capital development through innovative methods in Africa to ensure safe and secure aviation for the next generation. Her message for gender equality in the African aviation industry is for each male professional to identify a woman they will Inspire, Mentor and Empower to have more women in Aviation.

YAAPA has launched its Youth Aviation Tech Africa Program to enable the Young Africans passionate in aviation and ICT to work on solutions that are adapted to our aviation infrastructures as well as its community centers to promote aviation to facilitate tourism amongst the Next generation of Young Africans to ensure no country is left behind.

Conversation with Convener of Africa Tourism Leadership Forum, Kwakye Donkor

Conversation with Convener of Africa Tourism Leadership Forum, Kwakye Donkor

September 17, 2020

In this episode the CEO of Africa Tourism Partners and Convener of Africa Tourism Leadership Forum Kwakye Donkor advocates for Government support for Tourism SMEs in Africa to help them revive their businesses and gives an update on this year’s ATLF event scheduled to come off in Kigali, Rwanda.

Kwakye is an Experienced Marketing and Communications professional with a demonstrated history of working in education, financial services, hotel & hospitality and travel & tourism industries. Skilled and strong in Strategy Formulation, Business Advisory, Leadership Development & Coaching, Brand Strategy Development & Management, Market Planning, Mega Planning & Project Management and Hotel & Resort Development Advisory. Strong professional graduated from IMM Graduate School of Marketing, IMC and BSN.

Travel and Conservation Writer, Charlotte Beauvoisin talks Conservation in Africa in the midst of Pandemic.

Travel and Conservation Writer, Charlotte Beauvoisin talks Conservation in Africa in the midst of Pandemic.

September 15, 2020

In this episode, Travel and Conservation writer/blogger Charlotte Beauvoisin talks to Kojo Bentum-Williams about Conservation in Africa during the Pandemic. British expat Charlotte Beauvoisin moved to Uganda in 2009 as a Voluntary Service Overseas volunteer working on anti-poaching and human-wildlife conflict projects. She now lives on the edge of Kibale National Park, a protected area that is famous for 13 types of primate including chimpanzees.Charlotte is a contributor to the Bradt Uganda Guidebook and has written for SWARA Magazine, Lonely Planet, Fodor's Travel, The Daily Telegraph and Horizon Guides. She is a writer, marketing manager and trainer.Her award-winning blog Diary of a Muzungu takes readers off the beaten track in search of adventure, conservation stories and cultural encounters across East Africa. She has worked with many conservation organisations across East Africa, mostly in a voluntary capacity. Connect with Charlotte  here Diary of a Muzungu

 

Talking Wellness and Healthy Destinations with Outpost Healthcare

Talking Wellness and Healthy Destinations with Outpost Healthcare

September 13, 2020

In this episode, Dr. Didi Emokpare, Dr. Jude Emokpare and Fergus T. Maclaren of Canadian based Outpost Healthcare delves into their project which seeks to encourage wellness while on vacation with their  Healthy Destinations program for African destinations and their experience as being selected amongst the 9 finalists at United Nations World Tourism Organization’s Healing Solutions for Tourism Challenge. 

Dr. Didi Emokpare is a Board Certified Family Physician currently practicing as a Family and Addictions medicine Physician in Regina, Canada. He is the founder and Chief Executive Officer of Outpost Healthcare. He has over 25 years of clinical experience in a variety of countries including Nigeria, Trinidad & Tobago, St Vincent & the Grenadines, Grenada, Jamaica, the US and Canada. His areas of clinical interest and expertise include Addictions medicine, Indigenous, Public and Digital Health. He has published research papers related to Hepatitis C Virus management in Canadian First Nations peoples and the education of physicians in HCV management in association with the Canadian Liver Foundation.

Dr. Jude Emokpare is a Board Certified Family Physician currently practicing in Georgia, U.S.A. He is a Co-Founder of Outpost Healthcare and serves as the Chief of Global Health. Dr. Jude has an undergraduate degree in Microbiology from The University of Benin, Nigeria. He attended medical school at Saba University, School of Medicine. He completed his postgraduate residency training in Family Medicine at Columbus Regional Healthcare in Georgia. He is a Fellow of the American Academy of Family Physicians.He is an Associate Professor with a Georgia-based Medical School where he provides education to senior medical students in the hospital setting. He has worked in a variety of clinical settings including rural clinics, emergency rooms, and in-patient critical care and oncology units. Dr. Jude has also served as a medical director of a Georgia-based Regional Health organization, providing leadership, medical expertise and administrative oversight for a large multi-disciplinary acute care facility.

Fergus T. Maclaren, B.A. M.E.Des is a sustainable tourism and cultural heritage management professional with 25 years of experience in Canada and internationally, now focused on tourism at World Heritage sites and the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals. His background includes a broad range of tourism teaching, planning, destination management and community development expertise. He currently acts as the Director of International Relations and Knowledge Management for the Economic Innovation Institute for Africa, responsible for the development and implementation of their sustainable tourism program, where he assisted Outpost Healthcare with their UNWTO Healthy Solutions Challenge Top Finisher placement of their Africa-focused HealthyDestinations initiative in April 2020. Additionally, Mr. Maclaren serves as an Advisory Council Member for the Accra-based Heritage and Cultural Society of Africa (HACSA), as President of the International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS) International Cultural Tourism Committee, and sits on UNESCO’s World Heritage-focused Task Force on Culture, Tourism and COVID-19: Recovery, Rejuvenation and Renewal.

David Germain looks at Tourism’s role in Seychelles as it celebrates 250 years of existence

David Germain looks at Tourism’s role in Seychelles as it celebrates 250 years of existence

September 10, 2020

In this episode, David Germain, Director in charge of Africa & the Americas at the Seychelles Tourism Board joins me to discuss the contribution of Tourism to the Seychelles Island as it celebrates 250 years of existence.David Germain is the Seychelles Tourism Board Regional Director for Africa & the Americas responsible for the promotion and marketing of the Seychelles Islands in Africa and the Americas, David is a Seychelles national; he speaks and write French, English and creole and can speak basic Italian as well. He is responsible for the successful implementation of STBs marketing strategy and activities in the Americas and Africa, a campaign to actively market and promote Seychelles as a “ Choice” exotic islands holiday destination for the North American & African Travelers,  a responsibility to ensure consistent annual growth in tourism arrivals to Seychelles from those two continents.

New Documentary: 14 Wild Days Of Rediscovering The Pearl of Africa by ‘’The Best Job Ever'’ Crew

New Documentary: 14 Wild Days Of Rediscovering The Pearl of Africa by ‘’The Best Job Ever'’ Crew

September 8, 2020

In this episode, My guests four young travel content creators and storytellers from Uganda, Jonathan Benaiah, Brian Jonathan, Charles Mwesiga, and Brian Ahereza delve into their latest piece of work dubbed ‘’the Best Job Ever’’ tourism documentary which chronicles 14 days on the round in the pearl of Africa, Uganda.

Jonathan Benaiah - Executive Producer
Best known by his nickname, “The Ugandan Tourist”, Jonathan Benaiah was born and raised in Uganda’s capital, Kampala but has roots in western Uganda. A very experienced traveller, both locally and internationally, Benaiah developed a deep-rooted love for Africa's wild places. With years of experience of working in the tourism sector, he prides in curating PR and Marketing material for the digital space; including producing and directing a number of tourism short films like "The Heartbeat of Safari” and “Visit Uganda Tomorrow”. His latest project is a Post-COVID tourism documentary dubbed “The Best Job Ever”, a heartrending film that weaves together the stirring true story of four youthful Ugandan men on a 14 wild days’ and 4000 kilometre discovery odyssey through the country’s wild side in unprecedented times. He is also a seasoned nature photographer and travel writer contributing to a number of local and international publications.

Brian O. Jonathan - Aerial Photographer
Brian has his origins in the untapped northern part of Uganda. He is an accomplished aerial photographer, who loves tourism to the marrow. Although he is the Managing Director of Braca Tours & Travel Limited, Brian prefers to be out in the field in a 4X4 tourist safari vehicle, then back at the desk in his Entebbe office. During the 14 days’ Roadtrip, the crew nicknamed him “Bushman” because of how he was able to provide stunning views with his quadcopter (drone) from points which were previously unreachable.

Charles Mwesigwa - Director of Casting
Charles has worked in the tourism industry in Uganda for over 5 years, tailoring bespoke holidays and creating memories for countless tourists. He was born south of the Nile River where he grew up and later moved to the capital city to pursue a degree in tourism. He has been to every corner of Uganda but says he would do it 1001 times again. Charles’ planning, problem-solving and expert organisational skills made him the perfect campaign manager and Director of Casting for “The Best Job Ever” documentary.

Brian Ahereza - Director of Photography
Brian was born and raised in the beautiful western part of Uganda. He is a graduate of tourism whose love for the true wild experience made him the African safari expert he is today. Through his passion for the African dirt road, GoExplore Safaris, an East African DMC was birthed, which is dedicated to personalising luxury journeys throughout the East African region. Brian is also an accomplished tourism content and branding professional. He was the man behind the wheels during “The Best Job Ever” campaign but still had to juggle the role of Director of Photography.

CEO of HATAB Lily Rakorang wants Government to extend  Moratorium on Tourism Businesses in Botswana

CEO of HATAB Lily Rakorang wants Government to extend Moratorium on Tourism Businesses in Botswana

September 7, 2020

In this episode (#17), my Guest Lilly Rakorang the CEO of the Hospitality and Tourism Association of Botswana (HATAB) wants the Government to extend the moratorium on tourism-related businesses to mitigate the financial distress industry players are going through. She discusses the country’s domestic tourism push and lessons learned during this pandemic.

 

Tourism News Wrap 16

Tourism News Wrap 16

September 6, 2020

The VA #TourismNewsWrap16 is a 360 roundup of the latest news in the Travel and Tourism sector. It sums up what you missed the previous week. The video captures, in brief, the major stories. Headlines: •Tunisia Gets New Tourism Minister //Africa Showcase Goes Live //Airlines resume passenger flight services to Accra //South Africa launches Tourism Month// Nose By set October.1 for Reopening// More news on www.voyagesafriq.com 

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