CEETO project synergies with the European Charter Awards 2019

December 2nd, Brussels - Celebrated in the European Committee of the Regions, the 2019's edition of the European Charter Awards counted with a specific section dedicated to CEETO project and the recently established CEETO Network.

European Charter Awards 2019

Kindly hosted by Roby Biwer, Vice-Chair of the ENVE Commission of the Committee of the Regions, the Charter Award Ceremony 2019 took place in the European Committee of the Regions, Brussels, during the afternoon of December 2nd. This high-level event is hosted in the European capital every year in order to recognise the work of Protected Areas towards achieving sustainability in tourism. In it, first time applicants that adhere to the European Charter for Sustainable Tourism in Protected Areas (also known as the Charter) or that want to renovate their commitment are awarded as EUROPARC Sustainable Destinations.


Charter Award Ceremony 2019 - Photo by EUROPARC Federation

The Charter methodology enables Protected Areas to become an active player in the development of sustainable tourism in their region. With a high involvement of the local authorities, businesses and community, the methodology involves the creation of a common Sustainable Tourism Strategy and an Action plan for a period of 5 years. The Sustainable Destinations conform the Charter Network, which nowadays is conformed by 110 Protected Areas from 16 countries. During the ceremony, insights from the hand of the new awarded Sustainable Destinations were given and highlighted the importance of establishing private-public partnerships towards a sustainable development of Europe’s rural territories.

CEETO project at the European Charter Awards 2019

Within the Ceremony programme, a specific section was organised in order to present CEETO project. Stefania Petrosillo, EUROPARC´s representative in Brussels, gave an overview of the project objectives and main results achieved. Furthermore, she presented and promoted the recently established CEETO Network, an association of practitioners in nature conservation and sustainable tourism in Europe, established by CEETO project partners.

CEETO presentation at the Charter Awards 2019 - Photo by EUROPARC Federation

CEETO presentation at the Charter Awards 2019 - Photo by EUROPARC Federation

Likewise, the Appennino Tosco Emiliano National Park, one of the Pilot Protected Areas involved in the implementation of CEETO project, was awarded for renewing its commitment to the Charter.  To end with, during the networking and cocktail session that followed the Awards Ceremony, CEETO promotional material was provided to the attendees and the CEETO movie “A Sustainable Journey” was displayed in front of the audience.

Celebrating success with Protected Areas and their Business Partners

A remarkable new aspect of the Charter Award Ceremony this year, was the official announcement of the winners of EUROPARC Star Awards. This prize aims to champion and acknowledge the effort and investments made by tourism businesses working with our Sustainable Destinations across Europe. It is granted to businesses that have been active in the protection of their natural and cultural heritage, who are innovative and working to reduce environmental impacts, and to those inspiring a sustainable behaviour with their clients.

Images of the Star Awards 2019

Images of the Star Awards 2019 - Photos by EUROPARC Federation

The implementation of the Charter is an opportunity to work side-by-side with local business partners and ensure that tourism can bring social and economic benefits to the local community, but also to inspire and support managers in pursuing a more sustainable approach in their business models.