‘Throw-back Thursday’ and Tourism Environmental Awareness Month

With the launch of November as Tourism Environmental Awareness Month, under the theme: “Tourism is Key… It Starts with ME,” ‘Throw back Thursday’ takes us back 6 years to November 2012.  Our then Year 4s felt that the issue of littering on our beaches was an environmental and tourist-impacting pollution that they all felt strongly about – so much so in fact, that they set about creating some protest photography to raise awareness on the subject.  Read their story here.

How do our Year 4 photographs make you feel?

Litter education has positive effects on changing student attitudes and behaviours toward littering because it instills a positive cultural value and norm for how we treat our environment. (Hartley et al., 2015, Oliver et al., 1985).

Reflecting on the many, many environmental activities over the years that we have engaged in here at Provo Primary School,  it would be interesting to hear how those same children, now 14 and 15 years old, feel about this subject today, along with our countless other Provo Primary alumni.

How has this education, alongside family values, for example, impacted their attitudes and behaviours towards littering today? And what of others growing up in the TCI who have been a part of similar programmes.

What do our youth and young people think about littering and how do they feel it affects tourism?

Littering is a behaviour that is learned at a young age and once the behaviour is adopted, it is difficult to influence it otherwise. There is also an additional benefit of providing litter education to youth – and that is the changes that they can instill in their parents and family members. While plenty of anecdotal evidence exists that what becomes important to children becomes important to their parents, it is important to note that this claim is also supported by the literature (Knafo and Galansky, 2008, Damerell et al., 2013).

During this month, the Turks and Caicos Tourist Board along with other tourism stakeholders are keen to sensitize residents on the significance of the environment and tourism to our economic sustainability.  Changing our attitude to littering is one key action each one of us can do to preserve the cleanliness of the TCI.  In turn, this will allow tourists to truly enjoy our ‘Beautiful by Nature’ environment.  Our islands are truly beautiful and we want to share this amazing beauty with all our visitors.

What action will you take?

Litter. You see it. You know it’s there. But when you see litter around you, how do you feel? Does it sadden or anger you? When you see someone litter, do you ask them to pick it up? Do you pick it up? Do you just ignore it?

What do you think we should do as a community to help keep our islands litter free for our tourists to enjoy?

Speak Your Mind

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