Europamundo Foundation was set up in response to a need to help several projects we had encountered in the countries where we market our products or in those countries where we work by sending tourists who are eager to discover new cultures. With a view to having a fund to be able to invest in these projects, it was decided to give up a significant part of the company’s profit and allocate it through our own foundation to the important social work performed by the various NGOs we collaborate with. Although the investment is made by the Europamundo Foundation, we have to a certain extent involved the passengers that purchase our trips since Europamundo Vacaciones offers two euros per passenger to finance the projects of the foundation.
This is aimed at different stakeholders and in particular to the vulnerable sectors of the population in Latin America, Asia, Africa and Europe. We are interested in promoting sustainable human development and as a result we support all types of projects that focus on promoting the co-existence of different cultures in pursuit of a world of greater tolerance and diversity. In this way, we attempt to contribute to meeting SDG 11: Sustainable cities and communities.
Since 2011, Europamundo Vacaciones has been contributing to the Europamundo Foundation with two euros per passenger travelling on our routes, and various NGOs are called upon to propose projects to be financed with the collected amount. The decision about which projects will be financed is made through an assessment committee made up of 20 employees of the company. Since 2011, 80 have been financed.
One example is the project on the Khorbat, an ancient fortified village on the route of the Kasbahs, in the south of Morocco. For Europamundo Vacaciones and the Europamundo Foundation it is very important to maintain the culture, customs and identity of the villages, their diversity and their ways of life. In this project, we support development through tourism.
There are adobe villages in the area which are part of the Heritage of Humanity; however, many are abandoned and are gradually disappearing or deteriorating. Through tourism it is possible to recover this heritage and develop and protect local cultures and crafts.
This project brings together all these circumstances given that we have supported the construction of a building which is a multiuse centre for the El Khorbat Association for the Heritage and Sustainable Development of the ksar, which serves as a meeting centre for the association, for the women’s crafts workshop, as a library, as a nursery and as a living space for the volunteers.
Our passengers on the routes we follow around Morocco have the opportunity to visit the location and converse with its inhabitants, and receive the kindness, courtesy and part of their culture, in addition to being able to purchase their crafts.
El Khorbat is a beautiful, unique place to be remembered.
In our fund assignation formula, only 50% of the requested amount is provided in the beginning. Six months after the project has begun, after a follow-up report and the clipping of the work done, plus a visit usually made by an assessment committee member or is delegated to somebody who can accurately determine in situ the actions being subsidized, the remaining 50% is delivered. Over the last five years, we have been involved in a total of 80 projects, contributing a total amount of €1,182,505 which has directly benefited 158,083 people around the world.
At Europamundo, we consider that tourism firms such as ourselves can make a commitment to some degree, so that each passenger we send on a trip is aware of supporting the traditional communities which in one way or another are included in their different visits in the country. As a company, we have to be very conscious about the possible impact of our passengers’ approaching the different tourist resources and the importance of keeping these resources in perfect condition, both for the local population and for the future generations so that they can enjoy them without them having suffered any deterioration and if possible without any restrictions other than essential restrictions.