This year, the Caribbean Tourism Organisation (CTO) is acknowledging those individuals and entities that have made a significant contribution to sustainable tourism ventures in the region, with its CTO-TravelMole Sustainable Tourism Awards 2012.

The accolades will identify and highlight the contributions of individuals, groups, organisations and companies in the 34 CTO member countries, which offer unique and attractive tourism products or engage in implementing sustainable tourism-related initiatives.??

Nominated ventures should embody the CTO’s definition of sustainable tourism development, which describes it as "the optimal use of natural, cultural, social and financial resources for national development on an equitable and self- sustaining basis, to provide a unique visitor experience and improved quality of life through partnerships among government, the private sector and communities".

Entities may vie for awards in five categories: Caribbean Excellence in Sustainable Tourism; Sustainable Accommodation; Community Benefit; Heritage Protection; Special Event; and Biodiversity Conservation.??

In 2011, Harrison’s Cave was honoured with the Caribbean Excellence in Sustainable Tourism Award.???? In this first category, each CTO member country may nominate one attraction or product. However, for all other awards, nominations may be sent directly by individuals, organisations or companies.

Proposed products and initiatives should have been in operation for at least two years.?? Each entry must include a completed nomination form; a general description (using the CTO criteria guide) on how the project contributes to tourism sustainability, of 100 to 1500 words for first category submissions and 100 to 1000 words for all others; and two to four photographs (4MB maximum, each) or other support material, such as brochures or videos.

Nominees will be judged by an Award Selection Committee which will comprise a panel of CTO selected experts; and winners will have details about their projects publicised via CTO, its international public relations firm and TravelMole for dissemination worldwide.??

Relevant information will also be included in CTO’s Sustainable Tourism Practices database. In addition, all nominees will be invited to the CTO Annual Caribbean Conference on Tourism Development awards ceremony.

Award descriptions, guidelines, criteria and application forms may be obtained by contacting the Ministry of Tourism’s Sharon Trotman at or 430-7531; or Jacqueline Pollard at or 430-7514.?? Submissions for the first category should be addressed to the above mentioned by Tuesday, January 24, 2012.?? Submissions for all other categories should be sent to by Tuesday, January 31, 2012.

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