Women- A Tourism Majority
ourism empowers women and mothers. In 2019, the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) Global Report on Women in Tourism, highlighted that the sector contributes to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goal (5) on gender equality and women’s empowerment. The key findings from the report concluded that i) the majority, or (54 %),of the tourism workforce worldwide is female, ii) the gender wage gap is smaller in the tourism industry since women earn 14.7 % less than men, and iii) tourism offer women greater opportunities in leadership roles as 23% of tourism ministers tend to be women. Our own CEO of the Ministry of Tourism and Diaspora Relations, Mrs. Nicole Solano, is a testament to that. In 2021, Belize’s Labour Force Survey Report showed that the ‘Tourism’ sector saw a bump across all districts with nearly nine thousand more workers finding employment in the industry. Additionally, the report included that the bulk, or (36%), of employed women found jobs in ‘Services and Sales’ which include waitressing, cooking, and other tourism-related work. Tourism remains a gateway for women to find their economic independence. This past Mother’s Day, the Belize Tourism Board (BTB) showed its appreciation for mothers and that Tourism is the industry of inclusion and equity for women.
Mothers’ Day can be an especially sentimental occasion. The day often evokes feelings of gratitude, appreciation, and nostalgia. When we are children, our mothers are our main source of nurturing, safety, and encouragement. Mothers have the ability to express love in a multitude of ways. However, at some point in our lives, we all realize how challenging the job of motherhood is. Mothers are always operating on a lack of sleep, they constantly multi-task, and most will tell you that their child/children are like having their own heart moving around outside of their chest- the emotional connection is real and the feeling of worry is just as relentless. Motherhood is strength, it is nourishment, and it is an invaluable resource that the global tourism sector benefits from. To celebrate the day, the BTB gifted four deserving mothers with a massage session. Miss Chelsea Evelyn, our Community Relations Coordinator, presented the gifts as a token of our sponsorship for the Open Your Eyes Mother’s Day Show. We also showed our appreciation to the mothers that work at the BTB, who form part of the driving force of the organization. The BTB appreciates all mothers. It understands the role of women and mothers in the tourism industry in Belize and the world abound.
The Earth and its environment have some of the same qualities of beauty, love, and the ability to create new life as women and mothers do. Women, nature, and tourism seem to go hand in hand. This week we celebrate the Inclusivism in our tourism. This –ism is for the fact that the tourism industry includes more women and it includes women more. In 2023, the UNWTO reiterated that “Tourism must continue to deliver on its potential as a driver of women’s empowerment and opportunity”. Tourism includes gender equity for the empowerment of women- this Mother’s Day the BTB highlights the power of females, women, mothers, and even mother nature- a majority in our tourism industry.
See you next week.
The Belize Tourism Board