I know this is my first entry, but I can’t help but feel like I’ve been in the field for at least a month. Fellow interns, feel free to chime in here. We each sort of hit the ground running. Landing in Manila on July 3, I truly didn’t know what to expect, but it was love at first sight. As the romance began to blossom, greater luck and opportunity awaited me in Iloilo. So after spending two great days in the nation’s capital and attending orientation at the LGSP-LED Manila office, I boarded a plane bound for Iloilo.
I was offered this CIDA funded internship through the Canadian Urban Institute to go to the Philippines and be a Tourism Marketing Officer for a local government office. LGSP-LED (Local Governance Support Program for Local Economic Development) operates through the Department of Interior Local Government (DILG) here in the Philippines, in collaboration with CIDA (Canadian International Development Agency). I have spent the majority of my first week getting acquainted with (many) acronyms, such as these, for organizations representing various sectors. But it hasn’t taken long for me to realize there is great harmony between the public and private sectors here in Iloilo. Directors work with Governor’s office to address issues facing their people and subsequent actions are taken quickly to remedy them.
Part of my assignment will be to assist with the Tourism Innovation Challenge Fund, which calls on private business owners to apply for this grant aimed at adding value and sustainability to the provinces’ two main tourism circuits: Arts & Heritage, and Eco-Agri. Roundtable discussions begin this week with different industry reps (restaurant, hospitality, etc.); I am very eager to sit in on these and hear the perspective from the people themselves.
More to come!
In the meantime, check out some shots from Manila. Hope to revisit.