Verlem Eco-tourism Co-operative Society
Our passion towards sustainability has brought us together
Goa is known to be a tourist paradise. But the mass tourism on the coast has its own fallouts on the environmental and cultural landscape of this tiny State. With terms such as “Ecotourism”, “Hinterland Tourism”, “Village Tourism” gaining grounds, the eyes are set on the interiors of Goa. The encounters with some of the tourists have not been pleasant ones for many of our villages and it is hoped that the coastal picture is not replicated in Goa’s hinterland as well.
The “real Goa” lies in its interiors, in its villages. Goa’s rural life is characterized by the typical dynamics of rural life, the welcoming, relaxed, rustic atmosphere, natural beauty and to top it all, the peace loving Goenkar. While, it is understood that tourism will spread into the hinterlands, it is important that the initiatives are environment friendly, help the local community and most importantly empower them to decide on the kind of tourists and kind of tourism happening in their area. The need to have control over our lives and decide the future of our villages and the next generation was the catalyst for the community to coming together to form The Verlem Ecotourism Co-operative Society (VECS) with an aim to promote sustainable tourism through community initiative.
VETCS AIMS TO ....
To promote tourism which integrates natural beauty and the daily life of rural communities.
To promote productive sustainable practices within its tourism offerings.
To promote tourism which adapts itself to the dynamics of rural life and preserves the idiosyncrasies and the welcoming, relaxed, rustic atmosphere that characterize the rural areas of the country.
To promote tourism which is maintained by local initiative and participation, and strengthens local organizations, which are made up of various families or of the community as a whole.
To promote tourism as a cottage industry so as to integrate the local populace in this economic activity, distribute the benefits evenhandedly, and supplements farming income.
To promote conservation of the natural environment including forests, water resources, flora & fauna though restoration, afforestation, soil conservation or any other measure.
To carry out social development initiatives through the society for the benefit of the needy
The VETCS aims at creating a model of sustainable tourism for the entire State to emulate.
The Society is supported by Mineral Foundation of Goa, a NGO promoted by the mining industry in Goa to address social and environmental issues concerning the communities residing in the mining belt of Goa.