Lunch & Learn with Ventura Travel / V Social Foundation: "Intersectoral Cooperation for Positive Impact in Travel Destinations - A Case Study From Mexico"


Lunch & Learn with Ventura Travel / V Social Foundation: "Intersectoral Cooperation for Positive Impact in Travel Destinations - A Case Study From Mexico"

Wednesday, 19  June, 12.00 - 12.45 pm CEST

!!! Please note—this event was originally scheduled for 11 June but has been postponed due to a nationwide power outage in Costa Rica (the speaker's location). The new date is Wednesday, 19 June 2024, 12:00 - 12:45 CEST. We apologise for the inconvenience and hope that you will be able to join us on the new date!!!

Join this brief, inspirational session with our member, Ventura Travel and their partner V Social Foundation, where we will showcase how the collaboration between nonprofit organizations and the private sector can significantly improve the well-being of local communities in travel destinations. 

Hear Ifi Garita, a Costa Rican tropical biologist and entrepreneur with extensive experience in community-based tourism projects in Central America through the V Social Foundation. She will showcase the example of a women's collective in Mexico called Mucuyché. We will highlight successes, address the challenges encountered along the way and explain why partnerships between different stakeholders are essential for the success of local community efforts to thrive. There will also be time for discussion and questions.

Our case study takes us to Mucuyche, a small community in Yucatán, Mexico, where V Social supports a group of 12 women venturing into tourism in 2016, seizing the opportunity to attract visitors seeking cultural experiences and tours to the nearby cenote Yaaz Utzil. By pointing out the trajectory of this grassroots effort, focusing on gender equality, we want to point out how tourism can really make a difference and also point out the urgency to think and do tourism differently.

This session is held by Ventura Travel, a member of the Roundtable Human Rights in Tourism, and their partner V Social Foundation. .

Sharing this information with your colleagues, partners and interested stakeholders from your networks is highly appreciated. We are looking forward to your participation


Ifigenia Garita Canet
Coordinator, V Social Foundation 

Ifi Garita, a Costa Rican tropical biologist and entrepreneur, has extensive experience with community-based tourism projects in Central America through the V Social Foundation. She has supported numerous family projects in her beloved Osa Peninsula and serves as a naturalist guide in Corcovado, one of the most renowned national parks. Ifi also founded her own ecotourism company, driven by her passion for conservation and ecosystem restoration. Initially frustrated by the excessive sale of land to foreigners, she dedicated herself to finding sustainable tourism alternatives to benefit local communities.

Founded in 2001 and based in Berlin, the V Social Foundation is dedicated to empowering local communities through community-based tourism. Our mission is to help vulnerable communities access the tourist economy, enabling them to shape their own futures. By connecting global visitors with these communities, we foster authentic encounters and meaningful exchanges. Tourists discover the unique environments and traditions of each community, while the communities themselves gain pride in their heritage, strengthen their bonds, and cultivate future leaders.

Ifi Garita, a master in Management of Natural Resources, Sustainability, and Peace, is a dedicated advocate for her community, striving to protect it from over-tourism. She has represented her expertise at international congresses and participated in the Women in the Public Service Program in California with Hillary Clinton, promoting public policies to protect women in Latin America. Recently, Ifi was selected as the formal representative for the IPG (Gender Parity Initiative) governmental program for Puntarenas. She also serves as the director of a grassroots organization that promotes environmental education, culture, and art to create new opportunities and foster community well-being. Ifi's commitment and leadership continue to make a significant impact on her community and beyond.


Katharina Stechl
Program Manager

Katharina is a passionate expert in the field of business and human rights. Her studies in tourism management and a working background in development cooperation and communication help her to combine different perspectives to make the topic tangible and accessible for various stakeholders. 
As Programme Manager for the Roundtable Human Rights in Tourism, she conceptualises projects and leads their implementation. This includes the webinar series "Tourism and Human Rights", which she moderates.
The Roundtable Human Rights in Tourism is an international multi-stakeholder initiative that builds a trusted network of tourism stakeholders. The Roundtable provides access to expertise, initiates pilot projects and develops learning materials to support the implementation of human rights due diligence in accordance with the UN Guiding Principles within tourism companies, the supply chain and destinations