As Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises (MSMEs) rely strongly on tourism, they have been the most affected sector during the corona pandemic. Strict measures of quarantines, lockdowns, and travel restrictions have imposed a major risk on businesses to close their doors permanently. As part of its COVID-19 recovery programme, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Barbados & the Eastern Caribbean has partnered with Frankfurt School and The University of the West Indies (UWI) to support more than 300 Micro, MSMEs to increase their digital skills and resilience to external shocks.
The UNDP Future Tourism Project was born out of a need to adapt to the new post-COVID environment. The MSMEs component will provide innovative open training, technical assistance, tailored mentoring, and access to grants for MSMEs who work directly or indirectly in the tourism sector. Interested MSMEs can register for the open call here.
Klaus Hesse, Team Leader at FS says: "We are certain that Frankfurt School's experience in the field as a university and advisory institute with high education standards and reputable accreditations combined with the leadership of UNDP, UWI’s strong presence in the region and their existing MSME trainings, will set the stage for a solid Technical Assistance programme to support MSMEs in their economic recovery and transformation."
Adding to this sentiment, Head of International Advisory Services Department at FS, Fatma Dirkes, expresses: "We are very pleased to be part of this innovative and interactive way to support MSMEs and look forward to contributing to a more resilient and strong tourism sector in the Caribbean”.
The Future Tourism Project is funded by the UNDP Rapid Financing Facility which will catalyze UNDP’s response Beyond Recovery: Towards 2030 offer, through high-quality and high-impact country initiatives. UNDP is leading the UN’s socio-economic response to COVID-19 considering gender equality, youth empowerment and sustainability as cross-cutting principles.