Going beyond recognition, environmental awardees convened as a network to help promote Davao as one of the country’s greenest cities.
The Lunhaw Awards network of green practitioners is set to offer Lunhaw tours which will showcase the city’s environmental-friendly practices from forest-based initiatives, organic agriculture, coastal and marine management to water and energy conservation, pollution control, and green building architecture and spaces.
“We want to show tourists that here in Davao, we not only have the country’s best natural and cultural attractions but we also have a growing environmentally-conscious citizenry to ensure that the city’s development does not come at the cost of the next generation,” said Chinkie Peliño-Golle, Acting Director of IDIS, Lunhaw Awards co-organizer and secretariat.
The City Agriculturist Office, one of the Lunhaw Awards co-organizers, pitched this move to improve the city’s eco-agri tourism.
Lunhaw Awards organizers acknowledge that beyond the success of the awards night held as part of the 80th Araw ng Dabaw last month, the more important thing is to “ensure that the green practices are continued, promoted and replicated by others.”
However, since neither the Lunhaw network nor any of the Awards organizers are accredited tour operators, they will have to work to mainstream Lunhaw initiatives in Davao package tours.
“We will lobby with City Tourism, Department of Tourism and private tour operators to integrate Lunhaw initiatives in the tour packages they offer,” explained Peliño.
Lunhaw network members welcomed this opportunity and expressed their excitement, citing that the tours can encourage more green practitioners if they can also have additional income from continuing their initiatives.
“It is a challenge for us since we market our products individually. But if we can pool together as a network…then we can encourage more farmers to go organic since there will be established markets for their products,” expressed Severino Domingo, Lunhaw Awardee 2012.
The Lunhaw network is composed of ordinary citizens and groups recognized since 2012 for their environment-friendly initiatives, with no external funding from government. Their continued participation in the network after receiving their awards is testament to their serious commitment towards a livable and sustainable Davao City.
Network members will submit their individual portfolio for consolidation and packaging of the Lunhaw tours. They also plan to elect their officers and agreed to meet bimonthly to contribute to the planning and preparations for the Lunhaw Awards 2018.