Women in Community Tourism: Three inspiring stories

In case you haven’t heard, Planeterra has joined forces with Evaneos to champion community tourism worldwide, and we couldn’t be more thrilled about it.

The timing of our partnership announcement couldn’t be more perfect, coinciding with International Women’s Day.  So, let’s take a moment to celebrate and shine a spotlight on three extraordinary women who are at the forefront of the first community tourism enterprises supported through this collaboration.

Get ready to be inspired by the stories of Yenny Quispe Sallo, Ni Komang Sariadi, and Jenny Rasija as they lead the charge and uplift others with their remarkable work.

Yenny Quispe Sallo

Community member and former President of the Urpis de Antaquillka Association

Before joining the Urpis de Antaquillka Community Association, Yenny Quispe Sallo made a living by weaving belts and chullos (Andean beanies) to sell at a local market. However, this work was exhausting and unprofitable due to the low selling prices.

After meeting with her colleague Roxana, they decided it was time for a change. They wanted to showcase their amazing creations and explore new opportunities in tourism.

So, even though Yenny lacked experience in the area, she eagerly accepted the position of secretary in the association, backing up Roxana, who served as president at the time. Years later, Yenny ended up taking the presidency twice! 

In 2019, they formalized their association with 40 women, although not all of them are currently active members.

Yenny Quispe Sallo Urpis de Antaquillka Association (Peru)

Yenny and her colleagues also decided to level up their skills with some training in gastronomy and hospitality, getting ready to welcome travellers with open arms.

They were all set to welcome their first visitors in March 2020, but then, the COVID-19 pandemic hit and drastically changed their plans. This brought them down, but despite the initial setbacks, they found the motivation to move forward and complete the construction of their premises, with the help of their husbands during the pandemic.

Their perseverance paid off when they finally welcomed their first guests in July 2022, reigniting their determination. They’ve been hustling ever since, teaming up with local agencies to bring in more travellers. And by 2023, they were hosting 3 to 4 groups of tourists every month, which meant more jobs for the 23 incredible ‘mamás’ (as Yenny likes to call her colleagues), with plans to expand even more!

Their vision for the future is to keep growing, and they are immensely grateful for the support of Planeterra and Evaneos. Through our partnership, we’re supporting Yenny and all the women from Urpis de Antaquillka in enhancing their current tourism experiences and upgrading facilities and infrastructure.

This includes improving the llama hiking paths, kitchen facilities, and overall experience development. Additionally, we provide training and capacity building to ensure the success of their tourism enterprise.

Ni Komang Sariadi (Ibu Sari)

Founder of PKP Community Centre

Ni Komang Sariadi (also known as Ibu Sari) has travelled a remarkable journey from adversity to empowerment, inspiring everyone she meets along the way.

Despite enduring the heartache of a difficult divorce and being separated from her daughter for 12 years, she refused to let despair define her. Instead, she embraced resilience and determination, returning to school with a clear mission in mind.

Driven by her own experiences, Ibu Sari recognized the need to support other women facing similar challenges. Thus, she founded the KIM Women’s Centre, a sanctuary of hope for those seeking to rebuild their lives. Understanding the importance of holistic well-being, she developed comprehensive programs to nurture the mind, body, and spirit of her fellow women, offering both emotional support and practical skills.

Ibu Sari PKP Community Centre (Indonesia)

But Ibu Sari’s vision extended beyond individual empowerment. Recognizing the crucial role families play in women’s lives, she expanded the centre’s focus to encompass the entire community. With the introduction of the new PKP logo, symbolizing unity and growth, the centre transformed into a vibrant hub where people of all ages and genders could gather to learn, collaborate, and flourish.

Today, the PKP Community Centre stands as a testament to Ibu Sari’s resilience and compassion. Through initiatives ranging from sewing and cooking to yoga and more, it continues to empower individuals to lead fulfilling lives and contribute to their community. However, sustaining this vital work relies on the ongoing support of generous donors who share Ibu Sari’s vision of a brighter future for all.

We are collaborating with Evaneos to support Ibu Sari and the PKP Community Centre in upgrading their existing catering tourism infrastructure.

This includes enhancing the walking path around the garden to make it wheelchair-friendly and accessible to everyone. Additionally, we will provide training on the technical aspects of running a successful tourism enterprise.

Jenny Rasija

Founder of Razafindrabe

Jenny Rasija is a young Malagasy entrepreneur driven by a passion for arts, community development, and women’s empowerment.

Her journey into handicrafts started in 2010 when she joined family members in the trade. However, it was her travels across various African countries to engage in social work that reignited her passion for handicrafts. Inspired to make a difference, Jenny raised the bar and established Razafindrabe Collections in 2016.

As a social activist, Jenny advocates for artisans, working tirelessly to secure a brighter future not only for them but also for their entire families.

As a result, we aim to help Razafindrabe diversify its income, foster cultural exchange, and empower the women artisans involved. This will also lead to opportunities for their own education and that of their children, enable infrastructure upgrades and offer financial freedom.

Jenny Rasija Razafindrabe (Madagascar)

The stories of Yenny, Ni Komang Sariadi, Jenny Rasija, and all the women inspiring change within their communities are true examples of the power of community tourism to uplift lives and create better futures for women worldwide.

We are grateful to partner with global leaders such as  Evaneos to continue fostering the positive impact of tourism. Stay tuned for more updates on this exciting partnership.


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Planeterra and Evaneos: Transforming the Tourism Supply Chain Collaboratively

Overcoming the challenges of tourism requires decisive action, and Evaneos is setting a shining example.

In an era where responsible tourism is imperative, collaboration between industry leaders is key to driving positive change. That’s why we’re thrilled to announce Planeterra has joined forces with Evaneos, the leading online marketplace for tailor-made tours, to advance fairer tourism globally.

Evaneos, a European leader in responsible tourism, has been at the forefront of creating authentic and responsible trips for travellers for over 15 years. Through its platform, Evaneos has built a trusted network of local agencies worldwide, ensuring that at least 85% of the amount of each trip goes directly to local actors. Evaneos is committed to going even further in promoting fair distribution of revenues in the tourism supply chain.

Harnessing the Power of Community Tourism

Community tourism lies at the heart of this partnership. By partnering with Planeterra, Evaneos aims to harness the power of community tourism as a force to break down barriers and promote social equity.

Together, we strive to make a meaningful impact on the destinations where Evaneos’ local partners operate, supporting communities while promoting a better way to travel.

This partnership isn’t just about financial support; it’s about creating lasting change.

Through grants, technical training, and mentorship, Evaneos and Planeterra are empowering communities to become self-sufficient and resilient. By integrating community tourism experiences into Evaneos’ offerings, travellers can engage with local cultures in meaningful ways, enriching their travel experiences while supporting community development.

Planeterra and Evaneos are kicking off this partnership by supporting the development of three community tourism enterprises in 2024. These initiatives empower women, preserve cultural heritage, and foster economic and social growth within local communities, showcasing the immense potential of community tourism. 

Urpis de Antaquillka Association

📍Cuper Bajo Community, Chinchero District, Cusco Region, Peru

Urpis de Antaquillka is a community association formed by 23 women. They ventured into tourism to gain recognition for their handicrafts and generate direct economic income for their families.

Through their experiences, this female-led association aims to share ancestral knowledge with those seeking genuine experiences.

From immersive weaving sessions with local women to water ceremonies, traditional cooking classes, and unforgettable llama hikes in the Andes, Urpis de Antaquillka offers a rich tapestry of cultural immersion.

In collaboration with Evaneos, we are focusing on three experiences: the Water Ceremony, Llama Hiking, and a meal experience where travellers learn about a traditional Peruvian dish, the Pachamanca.

Our support involves helping Urpis de Antaquillka improve its current tourism experiences and upgrade its facilities and infrastructure, including enhancing the llama hiking paths, kitchen facilities, experience development, and providing training and capacity building to ensure the success of their tourism enterprise.

The goal is for the community to attract more travellers and create a dependable income stream to sustain their community tourism enterprise.

Impact: Directly employing 23 Indigenous women and touching the lives of 60 others.

PKP Community Centre

📍Bali, Indonesia

PKP Community Centre is a non-profit organization dedicated to fostering female empowerment and gender equality among vulnerable Balinese women and local girls. Through various initiatives, the center offers programs focused on teaching essential skills like sewing, cooking, yoga, and community integration.

In addition to providing economic independence and vocational training skills to women and youth, they also offer emotional and psychological guidance to women who have faced economic, emotional, physical, and social hardships, enabling them to lead a life of dignity.

Women associated with PKP can now support their children’s education, empowering the entire village by redirecting additional funds toward education and nutrition

Travellers are invited to immerse themselves in the vibrant local culture through activities such as food exploration, prayer offering classes, gardening, and craftsmanship workshops.

Through our partnership with Evaneos, we aim to support the PKP community team members in upgrading their existing catering tourism infrastructure, including enhancing the walking path around the garden to make it wheelchair-friendly and accessible for everyone. We’ll also provide training on the technical aspects of running a successful tourism enterprise.

With this support, the women will attract more travellers and establish a steady source of income to sustain their catering and other initiatives.

Impact: Changing the lives of 30 women directly and reaching over 100 through outreach efforts.


📍Antananarivo, Madagascar

Due to low levels of education in Madagascar, many women lack the skills to apply for formal jobs to support themselves and their children. Razafindrabe was founded to address this issue. This women-led social enterprise is on a mission to create sustainable livelihoods for women by promoting traditional Malagasy Raffia craftsmanship.

They strive to empower women economically and socially through craft-making while also preserving Madagascar’s cultural heritage. Thanks to Razafindrabe, many women who have had no previous formal education can now use their natural talents to create unique handicrafts and learn different entrepreneurial skills.

Like many tourism enterprises, the pandemic led to a decline in visitors, resulting in a slow recovery. Consequently, their sole source of income currently comes from online purchases.

Together with Evaneos, we want to assist the women of Razafindrabe in bridging the gap between virtual sales and direct interaction with travellers by creating different experiences, such as a cooking class to learn about traditional methods of cooking Malagasy food, as well as a hands-on raffia making experience.

As a result, we aim to help Razafindrabe diversify its income, foster cultural exchange, and empower the women artisans involved. This will also lead to opportunities for their own education and that of their children, enable infrastructure upgrades and offer financial freedom.

Impact: Touching the lives of 100 community members directly and an additional 1,200 indirectly.

Join Us in Making a Difference

As Planeterra and Evaneos embark on this journey, we invite travellers and industry partners alike to join us in making a difference. Whether it’s choosing community tourism experiences for your next adventure or supporting our initiatives, together, we can create a more equitable and sustainable tourism industry that benefits communities around the globe. 

Follow Evaneos and Planeterra to keep up with the latest news on this amazing partnership and the stories of the communities involved. And don’t forget to book your next trip with Evaneos to keep the impact growing!

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