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The Scouts' peace pole in Zihuatanejo. The Scouts' peace pole in Zihuatanejo.

Sustainable tourism efforts to be awarded at Ixtapa-Zihuatanejo festival

Arts events, tours, gastronomy and children’s music programs at the February 16-22 event

The Pacific coast tourism destination Zihuatanejo will host an event to recognize efforts aimed at promoting sustainable tourism.

Fumi Johns Stewart, executive director of the May Peace Prevail on Earth Foundation, announced that the first annual Sustainable Tourism Award Ceremony & Festival will be held in Ixtapa-Zihuatanejo, Guerrero, in collaboration with the Art & Cultural Association of Zihuatanejo.

The foundation is a global not-for-profit charity that develops and promotes peace activities for communities and youth.

“Our new initiative, the Amig@s de la Paz Sustainable Tourism Award Program, is designed to promote the tourism industry in Latin America, beginning in Mexico,” said Stewart. “We can use the foundation’s various peace activities to help stimulate tourism and draw visitors to destinations that participate in the program.”

The organization highlights businesses within the region that offer sustainable tourism and encourages local businesses wanting to participate in the future.

Patricia Talley, the original developer of the program as well as founder of the Zihuatanejo peace program, explains: “There is a lot of profit in war and this program is designed to illustrate that there is profit in peace, too.”

The festival, which runs February 16-22, will feature arts events, tours, gastronomy and children’s music programs, to name a few – all designed to attract tourists to the region while generating income for locals and service providers.

Among the distinguished international guests to attend the award ceremony and festival are Stewart herself and Deborah Moldow, the foundation’s (recently retired) representative to the United Nations.

Master Kim and Jennifer Kim from the Peace School in Chicago will attend to conduct yoga for peace classes for the community, along with representatives from the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Task Force.

“We are so proud to have the first international Amig@s de la Paz Award Ceremony & Festival here in Zihuatanejo,” said Gabriela Pasquel García, president of the Art & Cultural Association.

The awards ceremony and festival will be an annual event to encourage others to support sustainable tourism development. To participate in the program, the community must construct a peace monument as a symbol of its commitment to peace-building and celebrate the UN International Day of Peace each year. Then the community can nominate companies, educational institutions, civic organizations or individuals that support sustainable tourism to receive awards. 

Several other organizations in the community will be erecting peace monuments of their own. These include the tourism development fund Fonatur, the Institudo Lazardi, a progressive school in Zihuatanejo, and local hotels Las Brisas Ixtapa and Villa Paraiso Ixtapa.

For more information about the Amig@s de la Paz Sustainable Tourism Program contact Patricia Ann Talley, international director, Amig@s de la Paz Sustainable Tourism Program.

Mexico News Daily

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