Coast Salish Territories - The Aboriginal Tourism Association of BC (AtBC) kicked off its 20th Anniversary by hosting the welcome reception at the BC Tourism Industry Conference in Victoria on February 22, 2017. The event was a celebration with many stakeholders, industry partners and government officials. The celebration was a memorable evening of culture, great food catered by the Songhees Catering and featured wine from Indigenous World Winery and Nk’Mip Cellars.
AtBC has made enormous strides in collaboration with a long list of partners, thanks to the shared belief that Aboriginal tourism in BC is not just about business, but also about reconciliation, transformation and empowerment. Since first launching the Aboriginal tourism Blueprint Strategy over 10 years ago, Aboriginal tourism businesses in BC have increased by 85%. These enterprises now support 3,300 full-time positions. Over the next five years, AtBC expects that with the help of industry partners and a renewed focus that by 2022, Aboriginal cultural tourism in BC will welcome 2.2 million visitors and generate $1.5 billion in spending on trips adding an Aboriginal experience per year.
“AtBC continues to collaborate with our partners and celebrates our dedication and achievements with those we serve, the Aboriginal tourism operators that make this a successful growing industry,” says Brenda Baptiste, AtBC Chair.
AtBC was incorporated in 1997, by an incredible gathering of Aboriginal visionaries, entrepreneurs, communities and partners. This vision has been a catalyst, and inspired communities to celebrate culture, and carved a path for a new generation of strong and proud Aboriginal business leaders. In 2005, AtBC launched the Aboriginal Cultural Tourism Blueprint Strategy, with the goal of developing a comprehensive “Blueprint” for Aboriginal cultural tourism development over the short, medium and long-term. With the ground-breaking Blueprint Strategy, AtBC is viewed as a global leader in Aboriginal tourism planning, marketing and experience development. The AtBC Corporate Plan 2017- 2022 will be another cutting edge strategy to move the industry to the next level. Watch for this!
About Aboriginal Tourism British Columbia
Aboriginal Tourism BC (AtBC) is an Aboriginal tourism association recognized by the BC’s First Nation Leadership as the official representative of the Aboriginal tourism sector. AtBC includes representation from 300 Aboriginal tourism businesses and First Nations communities across BC. Through training, information resources, networking opportunities and co-operative marketing programs, AtBC is a one-stop resource for Aboriginal entrepreneurs and communities in British Columbia who are operating or looking to start a tourism business. For more information, visit www.AboriginalBC.com
Paula Amos, [email protected]