Miss Earth 2014: Miss Nepal Prinsha Shrestha
What is your environmental advocacy and why did you choose this?
I chose the development of inclusive eco tourism in Nepal as my environmental advocacy. Nepal is a nation that is extremely dependent on tourism as a source of income.
Unfortunately, tourism has its pros and cons. Therefore, as a student of business management, I have decided to use the platform given to me as Miss Earth Nepal to formulate and implement a project to show local communities how they, too, can be a part of and benefit from the influx of tourists in and around their homes.
It will in turn show businesses that cater to tourists how they can benefit from utilizing local products and services in an environment-friendly manner. Whether it be through farming organic products to be sold to hotels and restaurants, or converting a part of their homes into “home stay” facilities for tourists, my plan is to link the experts to the local community and build bridges of partnership that would foster the development of sustainable, inclusive and environment-friendly tourism.
I chose to start the pilot program in Mount Everest region for two reasons. First, because it is a region known to the world over and visited by thousands of tourists every year. Second, it is one of the harshest places on Earth to live in. If I can make it a success story here, then we can replicate the program anywhere in Nepal.
Inclusive eco tourism is the path to take to ensure that everyone benefits from tourism in a way that enhances people’s quality of life, while preserving the natural and man-made attractions preserved for visitors of today and tomorrow.
What tip can you share to promote this year's theme, Eco Tourism?
Sustainable eco tourism is possible only if we travel the path of inclusion and include local communities in its development and benefits. The visitor takes away magical memories that last a lifetime and leaves behind means to develop and sustain the local community and environment.
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Yahoo Philippines is the official online partner of Miss Earth 2014.
(Photo courtesy of Prinsha Shrestha)