The Greentourism marathon of NNRD Thematic WGs

As members in the National Network for Rural Development (NNRD) from 2010, we have contributed in a series of 8 thematic working group meetings held in the southern part of Romania from 20 to 31st of October, a true marathon between Timisoara and Tulcea, passing from Zimnicea, Targoviste, Urziceni and Bucharest. In Drobeta Turnu Severin it was impossible for us to attend in person, but we were in contact with all participants and sent them the materials for information and debate.

The thematic working groups we attended were:

TWG3 – Natural and cultural heritage promoting and use (including rural tourism). We presented green tourism a tool for sustainable use of natural and cultural heritage in rural areas.

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TWG5 – Support for the encouragement and development of organic agriculture – Good practices. We presented green tourism as a means to encourage organic farming in the agritourism activity.
TWG6 – Encourage the development of family farms, rural entrepreneurship, youth in rural areas. We presented green tourism as a proper way to encourage rural entrepreneurship, Family Farming and prevent young people from leaving rural areas.

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TWG7 – Mountain areas, environment and climate. We presented green tourism as a economic tool for tourism activity in rural areas to adapt to climate changes and for preserving Carpathian landscapes.

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Our main goal was to set the sustainable rural development as the only acceptable way to follow for NRDN in the context of climate changes.

In the 8 meetings we presented  the Strategy for the Sustainable Tourism Development of the Carpathians, the Carpathian region strategic document in tourism to which we contributed in the development process as observers.

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We brought into participants attention the vision, the objectives and the action plan of the Strategy for sustainable tourism development of the Carpathians as well as the implementation issues. We have emphasized the importance of the responsible use, protection and promotion of the Carpathians villages as a green tourism destination.

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The meetings were also great opportunities to share valuable ideas, to present our activities and the projects we are involved in, to set a new path for rural development in the light of Danube and Carpathians Strategies and the future financing programs:

– Presentation of our classification system called “PGL system” – Progressive Green Labeling a tool for sustainable use of natural and cultural heritage. Details on www.greentourism.ro We are currently looking for green tourism locations that wish to voluntarily implement this system;

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Wallachian Vatra – A green tourism Innovation Model for sustainable use of cultural heritage (material and immaterial) www.vatravalaha.ro. Transhumance project presentation taken from Mary Kohut Poland. As an immediate action, we initiated the development of the Vallachian Tourism Cluster.

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– Encouraging traditional crafts and new forms of art: GreenArts; We initiated this new cultural movement also at European level. Details on www.greenarts.eu. As immediate actions we organize green arts exhibitions, creative workshops and courses.

– Thessalia Charter for ‘Culture and Heritage Added value to Regional policies for Tourism Sustainability’ launched at Brussels in October 9, 2014, a INTERREG IVC CHARTS project.

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