Why Ecotourism Education is important?
SLEF is of the view that ecotourism education and related training and research programmes have been considered as the most important as far as future development of ecotourism is concerned. Education of tourism industry operators, their customers and the wider community is an essential but often overlooked component of sustainable tourism. In the race to develop new tourism products and services in natural areas, it is often marketing infrastructure and management that receives priority and the development of educational programmes is an afterthought. The potential to use the vastly expanding knowledge that we have with regard to natural and human system in the educational programmes for ecotourism is not only important but essential to long term sustainability. Any attempt to implement sustainable practices that do not incorporate educational programmes will be self defeating. Future generations of ecotourists will need to be aware of environmental considerations not only when holidaying but also in the daily lives.
SLEF has conducted diverse Ecotourism Training, Research & Educational Programmes focusing;
• To create an awareness on sustainable tourism and environmental and biodiversity conservation among the tourists and the community
• To popularize eco tourism in Sri Lanka
• Supported many who are interested in widening their horizons in study of ecotourism
• Help Universities, other Institutions and individuals who are conducting Research and Training Programmes in Ecotourism, bringing together the tourism industry segments, academia and general public in Sri Lanka who are interested in ecotourism with a view to provide latest information on new trends of ecotourism worldwide, environmental and biodiversity conservation through the development of ecotourism , how to ensure economic and social benefits to the communities through tourism, to educate the travel industry members in developing and marketing of Ecotourism Products on a sustainable manner, training of interpreters and guides, offer cost effective green certification, eco labeling, accreditation programmes etc. This sort of programmes would certainly help in strengthening of the ecotourism and sustainable tourism fabric in Sri Lanka
Online/Distance Learning Courses in Sustainable and Ecotourism is an another step forward taken by the SLEF to popularize the Ecotourism Education in Sri Lanka. This will be the first ever Online Ecotourism Certificate Courses in Sri Lanka developed by the SLEF in association with world’s leading experts in Ecotourism and Sustainable Tourism.