Six community-based sustainable tourism (CBST) sites that were seriously impacted by Typhoon Odette will be given priority by the City Tourism Department (CTD) for facility rehabilitation.
Tourism officer Demetrio Alvior said they will use the city government’s re-aligned P10 million fund to first rehabilitate six of the 32 CBST sites in Puerto Princesa. During the peak of the pandemic, the fund was initially designated for the livelihood program.
CTD plans to return to the CBST sites to re-evaluate areas that require immediate rehabilitation. The office will also take into account the most frequently visited sites and have more organized groups.
“May fund kami na P10 million para sa una talaga, livelihood during pandemic, kaya lang wala na ‘yong pandemic, pina-realign nila, ng council. Gawin na lang ito gamitin pampaayos sa mga CBST kasi talagang hindi kakayanin kaagad kasi malaking pondo ang kakailanganin,” he said.
In addition, the tourism office hopes to have the CBST sites fully operational by the first semester of 2023. Alvior believes that managing CBST sites contributes to environmental protection.
It is also one of the city government’s strategies to mitigate the effects of rapid urbanization by assisting locals in finding jobs in their area, he said.
The jobs created by the operation of CBST sites help to alleviate poverty in remote areas of Puerto Princesa, according to Alvior.
“Wala pa (list of six priority CBST sites) kasi iikutan namin. Although naikutan na siya pero niri-reassess namin ngayon. Next week may schedule kami na iikot kami kasama ang architect at engineers para ipa-design’n na ‘yong magandang designs na gawin don sa CBST destinations natin,” he said.