Social Inclusion and Local Development through European Voluntourism: A Case Study of the Project Realized in a Neighborhood of Morocco
- 1 University of A Coruna, Spain
- 2 Carleton University, Spain
Problem statement: Tourism is an important activity in the global economy that drives thousands of people each year through all continents of the world and generates employment and income. Its economic impacts affect on agents that are directly involved in the sector, transferring to other sectors and destinations on an indirect way, characterizing it as a transverse activity that affects and is affected by many different sectors and areas of the economy. Tourists, in turn, travel for different reasons and motivations. Those might be for leisure, business, health reasons, religious or any other reason. Considering the usual travel for leisure, there is an increase in the number of tourists seeking to escape traditional tourism, enjoy new experiences and have a change in their routine. Just as tourism, voluntary work also moves thousands of people around the world with the purpose of changing the reality of disadvantaged societies. Volunteers are submitted to the most diverse forms of unpaid work in various areas of action. Approach: The purpose of this study was to present European tourism as an instrument for local development and social inclusion through the practice of Voluntourism. For this are presented the results of the analysis of the project carried out by European tourists in Abi Bakar Sidik School, Youssofia in the district of Rabat, capital of Morocco during the month of July 2009. Departing from these results, the profile and motivations of the participants were established, their experiences along this month, as well as contributions from such activity for local development and social inclusion. The data were obtained as a direct survey. Results: Are shown in two ways: from the perception of voluntuourists and from the point of view of local population, both of them evaluate as a very positive contribution this kind of tourism for local population social inclusion and for the country development. Conclusion: The voluntourism is evaluated as a sustainable way of international cooperation to development and a important way to promote social inclusion of less favored social classes at less developed countries, in this sense it would be interesting for governments of developed countries to encourage young people to involve in this kind of activities.
Copyright: © 2010 Isabel Novo Corti, Priscila Nogueira Marola and Manoel Bana Castro. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
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- Social inclusion
- local development
- European cooperation