TEF Gives EC$8,000 To Provide Hand Sanitizer For Schools

In March 2020, soon after the outbreak of COVID-19, Dr. Tanya Beaubrun, who was assisting the Ministry of Education and Ministry of Health in their preparatory response to the pandemic, reached out to the Tourism Enhancement Fund (TEF) and indicated what the Ministries’ intention was in curbing the spread of the virus.

Through a collaboration with Natmed Ltd., a local company that manufacturers all-natural health and beauty products, there was a drive to donate hand sanitizers to schools across the island. Many private sector organizations joined the initiative that aimed to prevent the spread of the deadly virus within the school setting, including the SLHTA’s TEF.

During a check presentation ceremony held at Bay Gardens Hotel, the TEF, which donated EC$8,000 to the Ministry’s initiative, was among several partners who lent financial support to deliver hundreds of gallons of hand sanitizer to schools.

Aside from washing hands with water and soap regularly, wearing a face mask and keeping a six feet distance away from other people, frequent use of alcohol-based hand sanitizers have been proven to combat the proliferation of COVID-19.

Chief Medical Officer, Sharon Belmar-George, was among those who spoke at the ceremony. She congratulated the generosity of all involved in the drive. Echoing Dr. Belmar-George’s sentiments was Education Officer for District One, Cyrus Cepal, adding that combatting COVID-19 would require a collective effort.

“Run For Fun” Donates School Supplies

In February 2020, Serenity Vacations & Tours DMC, one of the SLHTA’s allied members, spearheaded the annual “Run For Fun” cruise marathon held in conjunction with Run For Fun Cruise Incorporated, from which $10,000 worth of school supplies were donated to the Tourism Enhancement Fund (TEF).

At a handover ceremony held at the Gros Islet Primary School afterwards, at which tourism and education officials were also present, students who participated in “Run For Fun” were presented with backpacks and other school supplies.

The“Run For Fun” cruise is niche cruise vacation event in which hundreds of individuals and special interest groups from a diverse middle to upper income demography engage in 5-kilometer and 10-kilometer races at select ports of call on seven-day cruises around the globe.

The event is hosted locally by Serenity Vacations & Tours DMC, which secured Saint Lucia as the marquee stop after a successful hosting three years ago, and the TEF believes it is one that benefits the youth in our community.

After the COVID-19 pandemic started in early 2020, some school supplies were still in storage. In August 2020, the TEF donated these essential school supplies to the Alexander Family Foundation and Events, a charity based in Soufriere, who in turn presented these supplies to deserving students.

SLHTA TEF Xmas Hampers

The Tourism Enhancement Fund is set to embark on its annual Xmas Hampers distribution to spread the seasonal cheers and goodwill to families in need. Annually over 250 hampers are distributed to needy families islandwide containing sanitary products, food items and other household supplies. This year the SLHTA has been inundated with requests for support from a number of communities and is exploring increasing the number of hampers to 300. The hampers are usually distributed directly by the TEF and through churches, community groups and the Royal Saint Lucia Police Force.



SAINT LUCIA (December 13, 2019) – The Saint Lucia Hospitality & Tourism Association’s Tourism Enhancement Fund has strengthened its support for Saint Lucia’s small and medium enterprises through the establishment of an Enterprise Development Fund. The Fund, an initiative of the Tourism Enhancement Fund, is a loan guarantee facility which enables qualifying small businesses to access the capital critical to enhancing their competitiveness and profitability.

This December, the TEF was pleased to present a check to the first beneficiary of this initiative. Funky Fungi is a local, commercially-capable, supplier of mushrooms owned and operated by entrepreneur Alexis William. The company has been able to reliably and consistently provide product to the hospitality sector that is fresher and more affordable than imported mushrooms.

The small, interest free loan, provided through the Fund, will provide much needed financing to the company and allow them to meet their growing demand from the hospitality sector for their mushrooms this winter season.

This newest venture was unveiled at the organization’s Annual General Meeting in August 2019 and is currently focused on supporting existing enterprises which have already been in operation but are seeking a financial injection to better penetrate the tourism and hospitality sector. In the last few months, in an effort to foster partnerships to grow the initiative, the TEF has met with local financial service providers that will assist in the provision of these small loans to the selected entrepreneurs.

“One of the key goals of the TEF’s work program this year is to bolster the Fund’s support of Saint Lucian entrepreneurs”, noted TEF President, Winston Anderson, “We know providing support to local suppliers is widely beneficial. We have seen this through the success of our Virtual Agricultural Clearing House. It is therefore our hope that the support of a company like Funky Fungi will begin to make a dent in Saint Lucia’s large import bill by ensuring that our hotels can consistently be supplied by local suppliers instead of relying on the importation of goods”.

Financial Update:

TEF discusses Enterprise Development Fund with Financial Services Providers

Bank of Saint Lucia and Savings Bank Foundation for International Cooperation were two of the institutions with whom Tourism Enhancement Fund Program Manager met this week to discuss the SLHTA’s Enterprise Development Fund. The Enterprise Development Fund is a project initiative of the SLHTA seeking to make available to established local entrepreneurs, small loans at reduced interest rates which will enable them to expand their production and service offerings. The focus is currently on supporting existing enterprises which have already been in operation but seeking a financial injection to better penetrate the tourism and hospitality sector. The project was presented at this year’s Annual General Meeting of members as a new initiative seeking to build on the organization’s sterling linkages program. 


On Tuesday 24th September, the Saint Lucia Hospitality & Tourism Association’s Tourism Enhancement Fund hosted a corporate mixer at the inaugural Saint Lucia Air & Sea Ports Authority’s (SLASPA) Port Showcase. The event, hosted at the Harbor Club, was an ideal moment not only for the Association to show support to their corporate partner SLASPA but to provide their membership a befitting atmosphere to foster business and networking opportunities with related industry partners.

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With support from the Tourism Enhancement Fund (TEF), the Saint Lucia Hospitality & Tourism Association (SLHTA) and the Caribbean Hotel Tourism Association Education Foundation (CHTAEF), 180 Saint Lucian hospitality workers polished their skills in a series of guest service training sessions.

Dubbed ‘Heartfelt Guest Care to Welcome the World’, the training this month gave hospitality team members, supervisors, managers, and owners the knowledge and skills needed to best serve a new and diverse generation of customers. Launched by CHTAEF in partnership with Virgin Holidays, the program equips hospitality professionals across the Caribbean with guest care and diversity training to enable them to better understand and cope with the needs of the rapidly changing demographics of modern customers.

The training was created to demonstrate and enhance the benefits of diversity and inclusion within the tourism industry by generating in all 180 participants, from 14 hotels, an appreciation of the broad diversity of today’s travelers and how to warmly welcome them all. The St. Lucia series of workshops was sponsored by CHTAEF with additional support provided by the Saint Lucia Tourism Enhancement Fund. The Fund provided an additional US$8,000 to deliver four more days of the workshops, ensuring many more SLHTA members could receive the training.

The sold-out workshops were held in both the north and south of the island from September 16 to 20, 2019 and concluded with a certificate ceremony for participants on Wednesday, September 25 at Bel Jou Hotel attended by Minister of Tourism Dominic Fedee, representatives from the Saint Lucia Tourism Authority, the TEF, SLHTA, Virgin Holidays and CHTAEF.

CHTAEF Chairman, Karolin Troubetzkoy, was delighted with the program’s success and said the main value of the workshops was its recognition of the natural hospitality of Caribbean people and how it could be enhanced to recognize and serve the rapidly changing types of people making up the ranks of visitors to the region.

In his remarks to attendees, John Mathurin, TEF Trustee and SLHTA First Vice President, emphasized that “initiatives like these are central to the TEF’s continued mandate of ensuring the professional development of St. Lucia’s tourism industry workers, thus making this program an invaluable opportunity we feel fortunate to be able to have offered to our membership”.

Wheelchair Presentation Continues

The presentation of wheelchairs continued on 11th September 2019 at the Children Development and Guidance Centre (CDGC). This time in addition to a number of regular wheelchairs, 10 specially fitted tilting chairs with added braces were donated.
Ms. Donette Ismael, TEF Programme Manager and Lisle Chase, Matthew Render and Konrad Wagner from Rotary attended the function. This project would not have worked without SLHTA’s Tourism Enhancement Fund and its leadership, working with the Ministry of Health and Rotary on the project. Rotary said that they stand ready to repeat the exercise at any time.

SLHTA TEF takes Tourism Linkages success to other sectors

The SLHTA TEF convened a meeting under the Chairmanship of Sanovnik Destang, Immediate Past President of the SLHTA. Committee members on the newly constituted committee include Ike Lauff of Mystique Royal St. Lucia Resort, Jonathan Allain of the Ministry of Commerce, SLHTA’s Tourism Enhancement Fund Programme Manager, Donette Ismael and Deputy Chair of the Linkages Committee, Noorani Azeez.

Key discussions focused on improving payments to farmers, consolidating transportation for small farmers interested in selling produce to the hotels, expansion of the committee to include manufacturers, expansion of the virtual agricultural clearing house, implications on a loan guarantee fund on the manufacturing sector and encouraging access to tourism markets by local furniture manufacturers. Exciting next steps also included the launch of the SLHTA / TEF’s Link Up programme which commences in October 2019 and allows small producers of fashion, arts, craft, agro processed items to share their offerings with visitors at hotels.

Linkages in Tourism Tradeshow (LITT) 2019

The SLHTA Tourism Enhancement Fund (TEF) hosted another successful Linkages in Tourism Trade show (LITT). The event which was held at the Finance Administrative Centre, Pointe Seraphine, Castries, which provided an avenue for participating companies to showcase a wide variety of locally made products and services.

The diversity in the display this year, kept to the SLHTA’s promise of expanding its linkages programme to include other sectors. The atmosphere at the event was a buzz of excitement as SLHTA members took in the showcase of locally grown mushrooms, local spirits, liquors, chocolates, sauces, crafts and the list go on.

“For me what sets this trade show apart from other trade shows I have participated in is how targeted it is. You get to interact with business persons within the hospitality sector,” said president of the St Lucia Network of Rural Women Producers, Robin Darrell. 

“Every year LITT continues to surpass the expectations of participants and this year was no different. From networking opportunities and developing business relationships with established companies in the tourism industry, participating companies will continue to derive benefits long after the event, said TEF Programme Manager, Donette Ismael.

She went on to explain that apart from the showcase, participants will be featured in the SLHTA / TEF newsletter and website, and participate in other similar events which will be hosted throughout the year, one of which will be “LINK UP”. The aim is to continue building on the successes that has been achieved so far by linking tourism with all the various sectors.

Businesses and individuals wishing to obtain information about the SLHTA Linkages in Tourism Programme can call the SLHTA Tourism Enhancement Fund at (758) 453-1811 or email dismael@slhta.com.

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