Corporate Social Responsibility writer for Justmeans, Antonio Pasolini is a journalist based in Brazil who writes about alternative energy, green living and sustainability. He also edits Energyrefuge.com, a top web destination for news and comment on renewable energy and Elpis.org, a recycled paper bag/magazine distributed from health food stores in London, formerly his hometown for over a decade....
Right Tourism Promotes Animal-friendly, Socially Responsible Travel
Travelling provides a unique change to know other cultures and interact with people from different backgrounds. It is also an opportunity to exchange ideas and bring improvements to areas where certain issues have not been resolved yet. One of them is animal welfare. In several countries animals are brutally exploited in economic activities involving pain and all too often, there's no local legislation to protect them.
For that reason, two UK charities dedicated to promoting animal welfare have come together on a project to promote socially responsible travel from an animal perspective. The League Against Cruel Sports, whose focus is mainly on hunting and "entertainment" activities such as bullfights and circuses, and The Brooke, focused on working donkeys, have created Right Tourism, joining forces to make the world a better place for animals in tourist destinations.
"All too often, people have no idea that their tourist money is perpetuating serious welfare and conservation problems, which is why it's so important to raise public awareness of these issues so that people can vote with their feet and only support compassionate activities," Right Tourism says on its website.
Any tourist activity involving animals can involve pain and suffering for them. Visitors have the power to stop that simply by not supporting them. For example, one video on the Right Tourism's website shows the suffering of a baby elephant being brutally culled from the wild in Burma so that visitors to Thailand can have seemingly innocent "elephant rides" as the one shown in the picture.
Right Tourism hopes that through education and information travelers can make ethical decisions based on the facts presented to them. It's all about removing the false veneer of respectability applied to animal exploitation in order to lure tourists in. It makes travelers aware of what really happens behind the scenes and give a voice to the exploited animals.
Image credit: Right Tourism