Experience Eco: students host sustainable tourism event


Photo credits: Dhonveli

Villa International High School (VIHS) students hosted a sustainable travel and tourism event Experience Eco on Tuesday.

Experience Eco was organised by business stream students as part of their Travel and Tourism A’level examination. Over 200 attendees participated in the event held on the 11th floor of AA building.

The two-hour event included stalls from tour operators, jewellery makers, and environmental conservation organisations. In addition to hosting food stalls, the students also organised a stall for participants to design their own tote bag in order to encourage a more sustainable lifestyle. They also had a polaroid booth set up. The event was received warmly, with teachers as well as parents attending as well.

Speaking with the Maldives Business Review, the organising team of students, named Dhonveli, shared why the event was important to them.

What is the purpose of the event?
The purpose of the event was to shine a light on the gravity of environmental protection to Maldives not only as a famed travel destination pertinent to the white sandy beaches and clear blue seas, but also as a low lying nation.”

What is Dhonveli?
Dhonveli is a group of six girls from VIHS. We chose the name as it pays homage to our culture and birthplace, meaning “white sand” in our mother tongue. It is also relevant to tourism in The Maldives as white sand beaches have long been associated with the nation through consistent marketing.

What was the reception?
We included the question on the feedback forms we asked our attendees to fill out, asking how motivated they are to work towards being more sustainable. Most respondents answered that they were motivated to be more sustainable as a result of the event. In addition to this, due to the increased access to information in recent years, our current generation is highly aware of the current environmental crisis and therefore our event had a high turnout.

What are some highlights from the event?
The participants in our tote bag stall was one of our personal highlights from the event, as it served its intended purpose of getting more people to purchase and use tote bags.