Zurab Pololikashvili, Secretary-General of the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), has joined Massimo Garavaglia, Italy’s Minister of Tourism, to officially inaugurate the first Global Youth Tourism Summit.
The Summit, which will take place in Sorrento, Italy from June 27 to July 3, will bring together children and youth from all over the world, offering them a forum to voice their visions and hopes for the sector. In keeping with UNWTO’s commitment to youth empowerment, the initiative will also provide participants with opportunities to network with leaders in politics and business, allowing them to participate in decision-making as tourism realises its potential as a driver of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
“Tourism is a proven source of opportunity for young people – in cities and in rural communities, from every educational background and in every global region,” UNWTO Secretary-General Zurab Pololikashvili said in welcoming the first participants.
“Young people can play a major role in overcoming the crisis facing the tourism sector” said Minister of Tourism Garavaglia. “They can also be an active agent of recovery and change and play a leading role in the transition to a more sustainable tourism, which is an essential if we want to achieve sustainable development. We are all looking forward to welcoming you to wonderful Sorrento.”
The young participants were also greeted by Didier Drogba, the UNWTO Ambassador for Responsible Tourism and a well-known footballer, who encouraged them to be the protagonists of tourism’s future and wished them luck in their next activities.
The Global Youth Tourism Summit kicks up during the European Year of Youth. Several webinars will be held as part of the GYTS series, during which participants will learn about tourism and sustainability, culture and gastronomy, innovation and climate action, and other pertinent issues.