Kenya Tourism Board (KTB) says it will give capacity building to the youth venturing into tourism business in the counties to enhance their skills in the hospitality sector.
KTB chairperson Francis Gichaba disclosed that a number of youth in the regions endowed with tourism activities lacked adequate skills and knowledge to better interpret and deliver visitor experience to the tourists.
“As the tourism marketing agency, this is one of the areas we will focus on especially as we enhance our relationship with the county governments in identifying opportunities that would spur tourism activities in the regions,” said the chairperson.
Speaking at the sidelines of the just-concluded 7th edition of Turkana Tourism and Cultural festivals held in Lodwar, Gichaba said tourism business is one of the economic pillars that had direct impact right from the grass root levels.
He said, as one way of creating jobs for the youth was to identify other opportunities for tourism and pointed out culture and heritage as one of the tourism pillars away from the beaten path of wildlife and beach that Kenya is famed for.
“Besides what Kenya is traditionally known for, cultural and heritage is our next frontier in addition to adventure, eco-tourism among others. This is in line with our strategy to diversify our tourism offering to cater for diverse needs of the clientele,” said the chairperson.
According to the chairperson, KTB will collaborate with the county governments and other partners in the sector to help identify, develop and package the hidden tourism gem in the regions.
At the same time while meeting the local tourism partners in Lodwar, Gishaba lauded the government for improved infrastructure and security to the northern Kenya, a move he observed was a major boost to the tourism business.
“Even as we ask of government to do more, improved infrastructure and security in this region is not only enhancing access to tourism facilities but spurring other economic activities for the livelihood of the people,” added the chairperson.
While addressing the 7th edition of Turkana Tourism and Cultural festivals, the newly appointed Cabinet Secretary for Tourism and Wildlife Dr. Alfred Mutua disclosed that he will work with the country towards the improvement of tourism facilities including airstrips for ease of access to the interior parts of the tourism-rich country.
The northern Kenya of Turkana is known as home to the cradle of human with the discovery of the almost complete skeleton of human related fossil ever found in the world –the Turkana Boy known to have existed some 1.6Million years ago. Other attractions include culture, adventure, research and filming making.