For our tours, we employ a very diverse group of local people. When we work with local partners, we make sure they employ or are run by local people as well. For some tours, we work with local guides who know their community and environment very well but are not tourism professionals. We pair them up with a bilingual tour leader and build their capacity in working with tourists, providing services and sometimes also learn English. This way, we assure we are employing some of the most vulnerable persons (single mothers as local cooks or guides, young women from human settlements as local guides, etc.
In addition, for every tour we make a donation to the NGOs that are visited on the tours to support their projects. We also offer the visitors the possibility to continue to support the NGOís projects. A few visitors have entered a scholarship program we are offering, supporting kids and teenagers to continue to go to afterschool support and later to university.
We try to work paper-less, providing all details of our tours through our website, PDF-documents and emails. In our office, we try to use as much recycled and recyclable materials as possible.
Where possible, we use public transport options.
Many of our tours promote environmental awareness and aim to educate on environmental issues. In particular, our Amazon tours focus on responsible contact with nature and understanding the challenges our environment faces today. Travelers stay in eco-lodges that are built in the traditional local style.
Our tours respect and promote the host communitiesí culture. Activities focus on the traditions and local culture of the community: visitors can participate in workshops on traditional architecture or agriculture, handicrafts, local food and cooking habits, etc. The income that our and similar tours generate, encourages communities to conserve these traditions. The interest and the admiration of travelers, who often come from far away, for their culture is also a source of pride of the local community. The tours focus on an authentic experience for tourists and a culturally sensitive, respectful encounter between tourists and hosts. Nothing is put into scene and people are not asked to pretend or act differently than they normally do. Tourists are informed about the particular culture and customs in the community they will visit before they arrive and they will be made aware of any rules of behavior they should respect.