TOURISM Secretary Christina Garcia Frasco led the inauguration of the Tourist Rest Area (TRA) last Aug. 18, at the City Hall Compound in Sitio Maag, Barangay Peñaplata, Island Garden City of Samal.
Frasco was joined by IGACOS Mayor Al David Uy, TIEZA – Tourism Infrastructure and Enterprise Zone Authority (TIEZA) Board of Director and Mindanao Development Authority Chairperson Secretary Maria Belen Sunga-Acosta, MARINO Partylist Representative Sandro Gonzalez, DOT Undersecretary Shahlimar Hofer Tamano, DOT Xl Regional Director Tanya Rabat-Tan, and TIEZA Assistant Chief Operating Officer Gregory Oller during the ribbon cutting and ceremonial handing over of the TRA to the local government.
The new tourist facility is equipped with free-to-use, traveler and PWD-friendly amenities, including a pasalubong center that sells local products and crafts, clean restrooms with showers, charging station, a lounge area, and even a lactation room for breastfeeding mothers.
The one-stop is the second TRA facility to be constructed in Mindanao, next to the one in Manolo Fortich, Bukidnon.
During the inauguration of the TRA, Frasco also led the awarding of PhP300,000 worth of frontline service, language course and kits to the Adecor United Fisherfolk Organization, to further assist them in their management of the Taklobo Tours, one of the major tourism lures in IGACOS. The DOT head also officially turned over the Ecotourism Management and Business Plan (EMBP) to the said organization.
The Davao Regional Ecotourism Committee, chaired by DOT Xl Regional Director Tanya Rabat Tan with the support of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, came up with the EMBP for key community-based ecotourism enterprises in the region.
“The EMBP will play a vital role in the promotion of biodiversity conservation, enhancement of eco-tourism, building capacity within local communities, and providing sustainable livelihood opportunities,” Frasco added.
The secretary also donated curated tour guiding kits, which contain a pair of sunglasses, tour guide hat, sunblock, tour guide journal, and a lapel microphone, to 48 IGACOS-based, DOT-accredited tour guides.
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