Empowering Communities, Restoring Nature: Planeterra’s Impactful Initiatives

Written by Thomas Armitt – Global Manager, Projects & Partnerships, Planeterra

From the air we breathe to the food we rely on, biodiversity is essential for life on Earth. Moreover, without biodiversity, tourism simply would not exist, and communities around the world would not be able to harness its benefits.

It is no secret that biodiversity is sadly under threat, but we don’t want to dive into that. Instead, we want to take action and play our part, doing what we do best: using tourism to change lives.

Planeterra believes that community tourism can be a powerful tool to help address the climate and biodiversity crisis. So, in today’s blog, we’ll explore three game-changing initiatives that allow us to support the work that communities around the world are doing to protect, restore, and manage their environment. Let’s get into it!

Soa Zara Ranohira, Madagascar

Innovating for Change: Climate & Biodiversity Initiative

Picture this: communities partnering up with tourism enterprises to tackle the impacts of climate change. That’s the essence of Planeterra’s Climate & Biodiversity Initiative.

Through this initiative, we’re not just looking to offset carbon footprints; we want to develop grassroots solutions that make a long-lasting, tangible impact. For this, we’re working hand-in-hand with our community partners to create life-changing experiences that can be woven into the fabric of tourism.

Imagine trekking through lush forests, guided by a community member who intimately understands the land. The aim of these experiences is for travellers to go beyond just being visitors to a place, and instead become participants in something much larger—a movement toward a more positive future for all.

Rooted in Resilience: Tree Growing Initiative

Communities at the forefront of climate change often face its impacts most severely and disproportionately. That’s where Planeterra’s Tree Growing Initiative comes in. Our mission with this initiative is simple yet powerful: “Growing Trees to Uplift Communities.”

We see trees as more than just symbols of biodiversity regeneration; they’re lifelines for communities facing uncertain futures. This is evident through the many benefits of growing trees: healthier ecosystems, food security, water security, and improved defences against soil erosion, flooding, and drought.

At Planeterra, we believe that by planting the right trees in the right places and for the right reasons, we can help communities build sustainable livelihoods, improve their well-being, and become more resilient to the growing impacts of climate change.

It’s a win-win situation that positively impacts both people and the planet. 

We’re immensely proud to say that, to date, we’ve grown over 2 million trees in partnership with G Adventures and Flight Centre, and we collaborate with Reforest to monitor our progress and achievements with this initiative.

Nature-Positive Tourism: Investing in Communities

Nature-positive community tourism is not just about minimizing harm; it’s about actively investing in the well-being of Indigenous communities and the environments they call home.

Through this initiative, Planeterra is working alongside communities to help them integrate a nature-positive approach to the experiences they offer. From protecting animal welfare to reconnecting people with nature, every aspect of these experiences is designed to leave a positive impact.

The goal is to uplift communities and help travellers become stewards of the environment and advocates for social justice, forging meaningful connections and leaving a legacy of positive change.

So, What Can You Do to Get Involved?

As travellers, we hold immense responsibility and our choices matter. Let’s choose our adventures wisely! Opt for trips that prioritize responsible travel and uplifting communities. If you need advice on that, get in touch with Planeterra! We’re happy to support you on your journey to becoming a more responsible traveller.

Also, spread the word about Planeterra’s initiatives and the impact we’re creating and working to amplify. But most importantly, take action in your own life to reduce your impact on nature and guarantee a thriving planet for future generations. 

Remember that the only way to protect and restore biodiversity is by working together and playing our part.

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