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PIA Press Release

DOT launches "GREET Program" in Tacloban as PGMA's gift to grassroots

Tacloban City (April 20) -- President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo never rests in looking for ways to improve the economy of the country in order to uplift the life of the Filipino people.

The President herself conceptualized the Grassroots Entrepreneurship for Eco-tourism (GREET) livelihood grants program, inspired by the Donsol Botanding interaction, thus informed Ms. Susan del Mundo of the Philippine Convention and Visitors Corporation, during the media interaction at the Harampang Ha PIA Thursday.

The GREET Program is President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo's gift to the grassroots, Ms. Del Mundo said, to make them entrepreneurs and to make them partners in the promotion of the tourism industry and most specially protectors of the bounties of nature which the whole country is blessed with.

PCVC representative Susan del Mundo (3rd from left) gives media an overview on Grassroots Entrepreneurs for Eco-Tourism (GREET) in today's Harampang ha PIA. To be launch tomorrow, April 20 at SMED Center, Tacloban City, GREET is another project of the DOT. Also in photo are DOT-8 regional director Karen Tiopes (left) and PIA-8 regional director Olive Tiu, moderator. (PIA-8 photo by Vino R. Cuayzon)

The GREET Program will be launched today, April 20, through the Leyte-Samar Roadshow Presentation at the Leyte SMED Center, Tacloban City, DOT Region 8 Director Karen Tiopes informed.

Director Tiopes said it is a great honor for the Region to be the host of the launching and the first of a series of Roadshow Presentations nationwide. This only shows that Eastern Visayas is rich in eco-tourism destinations which must be promoted and protected and which must also benefit the people in the host communities, Director Tiopes quipped.

The GREET Program is in line with President Arroyo's directive to promote and safeguard the country's eco-tourism sites through the provision of essential services for tourists.

It aims to enhance the livelihood opportunities for promising entrepreneurs who can best explore the inherent tourist drawing potentials of eco-tourism sites which can readily be sources of income within their respective protected areas.

The GREET Program would provide blocks of P50,000 to P100,000 worth of grants to deserving groups or individuals with feasible entrepreneurial or business proposals in eco-tourism sites in the country.

The Department of Tourism headed by Secretary Ace Durano, has initially allocated the amount of P10 million for the GREET Program. This amount will be increase depending on the success of the program, Ms. Del Mundo, who is the head of the GREET secretariat, said. She is in town together with a member of the GREET Secretariat, Mr. Ernie Teston who is a native of Tanauan, Leyte.

Director Tiopes said that the various stakeholders of the Tourism Industry have been invited in today's launching and Roadshow Presentation. These include the cooperating national line agencies, local government executives and non-government organizations and the media.

Ms. Del Mundo and Director Tiopes encourage the various groups in the eco-tourism sites to submit their business plan. Director Tiopes said that DOT 8 has requested the support of the Department of Trade and Industry in the Region to help the proponents in making their business proposals. (PIA 8) [top]

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