The two-day conference provided a platform for dialogue on the challenges that affect the socio-economic empowerment of women, funding constraints, and the establishment of support structures and incentives.
A baseline study conducted by the Tourism BBBEE Council on the State of Tourism Transformation, revealed that only 11% of enterprises had black women representation on boards, in executive and senior management positions, and that the overall rate of transformation was slow.
“It is concerning that the representation of women at executive and senior management positions is low. Our collective participation is critical to transforming this sector. Rise up, and let us pro-actively strive to make this sector inclusive,” said Minister of Tourism, Tokozile Xasa, speaking at the opening of the conference.
The conference concluded with consensus on the following resolutions:
- The current Advisory Committee will work with the WiT Provincial Chapters to develop a constitution for the formation of an autonomous body that will drive women empowerment initiatives.
- The WiT Provincial Chapters will act as a support structure that will coach and mentor new entrants into the industry.
- The Department will facilitate public-private partnerships that will capacitate women in aspects of financial education and management.
- Through the Tourism Incentive Programme, the department will assist women to gain access to domestic and international trade shows to market their products.