BORACAY, AKLAN – On the first day of the Boracay rehabilitation, the Department of Tourism (DOT) led the first wave of clean-up drive along the stretch of Bulabog Beach as part of #SaveBoracay rehabilitation efforts.
More than 200 volunteers arrive from the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR)’s Environmental Management Bureau, the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG), the National Association of Independent Travel Agencies Boracay chapter, Caticlan Airport, resort employees and informal workers.
DOT Secretary Wanda Tulfo-Teo got down on the ground to join the hundred of volunteers.
“The simple acts of throwing your trash properly and picking up rubbish you see goes along way as we go all out in rehabilitating Boracay,” said Teo.
The world’s best island according to Condé Nast Traveler, has temporarily closed its doors to tourists starting April 26 upon Proclamation No. 475 signed by President Rodrigo Duterte declaring the state of calamity of barangays Balabag, Manoc-manoc, and Yapak.
Volunteers from Brgy. Balabag, Southwest Travel and Tours, and employees of other government agencies also helped out during the clean-up.
According to DOT VI Regional Director Atty. Helen Catalbas, the Department thru the regional office is working double time on the plans laid out for the island and the region.
Among the plans are the launching of cruise tourism in other parts of Western Visayas Region, repair and repainting of pumpboats, accreditation campaign for compliant establishment, and massive training program.
Various training and seminar includes modules for local guiding, foreign language for Mandarin and Korean, international standards for hospitality service, tourist police, kulinarya training for rural community, tourist security and safety seminar, UNESCO World Heritage site guiding and preservation, tourist destination website development and upgrading, first aid and basic life support, disaster risk reduction management, tourism renovation and self-reinvention, safety and emergency response, and festival management.
Over 5,000 thank you cards were also handed out to local and foreign tourists leaving the island.