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  • Writer's pictureMBF

TOURISM PLAYS A BIG PART IN SMALL TOWN REGENERATION



Proudly Mafube: https://bit.ly/440spuF

During last week a video produced by well-known filmmaker Frans Cronje was published, showcasing some of what the Mafube region have to offer. In common with the international record on the role of tourism in marginal areas, it is observed that across small town and rural areas of South Africa, a tourism-driven approach is seen as one of the few opportunities to tap into underutilised or unused local assets and to draw in external revenue, to enable economic regeneration and local economic development.

Mafube Business Forum (MBF) share the view of Professor Ernie Heath of the University of Pretoria when he remarked that “tourism provides a window of opportunity to create viable entrepreneurial opportunities and enhance the quality of life of so many people in small towns throughout South Africa.”

Small towns are in trouble, and Frankfort, Villiers, Tweeling and Cornelia are no exceptions. There cannot be any reliance on local or provincial government which are both catastrophically dysfunctional and there will be no knight on a white horse to come to our rescue! MBF therefore applaud the example set by Mafube Tourism by introducing practical and implementable strategies and actions to unlock the tourism potential of our region, and engaging with local stakeholders in focused participative processes to agree on a shared tourism vision for our towns. What is most encouraging is that Mafube Tourism’s efforts have not gone unnoticed and have resulted in a general realisation among local businesses and residents that everyone has a role to play – it starts with cleaning up the street and pavement in front of you! Follow this up with a smile and be helpful towards anyone you come across during your day – whether that person is an out-of-town visitor or someone local. Businesses must strive to consistently provide excellent service and train up their staff in order to make it a habit.

The tourism initiative of Mafube Tourism fits in perfectly with the Small Town Regeneration strategy that MBF is currently pursuing. MBF warn that in order for success in the tourism sector to be achieved, there must be ground level community participation. This calls for an awareness campaign to be conducted in each of our towns. Local businesses and residents, as well as local government, must understand and value the natural, cultural and commercial assets that we possess as a community and how to optimise these for revenue generation.

Find out how to be part of the tourism initiative. Visit our offices at 18A Church Street, Frankfort on Mondays to Thursdays from 08h30 to 16h00 and Fridays 08h30 to 12h00. Call or send a WhatsApp message to Marina on 079 145 4295. Visit our website www.mafubebf.org and follow us on Facebook.

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