Fiona Jeffery OBE, former Chairman of World Travel
Market (WTM) and Chairman and founder of the
international water aid charity Just a Drop has been
appointed a member of the UNWTO's new World
Committee on Tourism Ethics.
Jeffery, who will serve on this prestigious group
until 2017, is known for her pioneering work on
advancing sustainability and ethics in international
tourism spanning 20 years.
The appointment by the UNWTO General Assembly at its
recent meeting of Member States at Victoria Falls
(Zambia/Zimbabwe), is in recognition of her
worldwide ethical campaigning stance.
Jeffery has helped to change the industry's mindset
on major issues of long term significance to
destinations, such as economic, social, cultural and
environmental factors as well as alerting tourism to
potential negative impacts in the future.
She has spoken widely on issues such as trafficking,
gender equality, child protection and accessible
tourism for the disabled. In addition she has helped
to signal issues surrounding responsible tourism
such as conservation, preservation of wildlife and
fair trade, ensuring that poor communities are able
to enjoy the benefits derived from the introduction
of tourism to a region.
Under her leadership, Jeffery established WTM's
World Responsible Tourism Day, recognized as the
world's most ambitious - and largest - responsible
tourism initiative with a program of workshops,
debates and presentations. The aim is to stimulate
and educate resorts, travel companies and travel
professionals to sign-up to a strict code of
year-round sustainable principles.
In 1998 Jeffery founded Just a Drop to encourage the
international industry to 'give back'. Supported by
the goodwill and active involvement of the industry,
the charity has provided clean water close to the
homes of more than one and a half million people in
over 30 countries. In particular, the organization
has helped transform the lives of thousands of
families as well as save the lives of babies and
children under the age of five who frequently die
from water-related diseases.
Jeffery left WTM in April this year to pursue new
career challenges. However, she will be back at WTM
2013 (Wednesday, November 6, 2:30 pm, South Gallery
Rooms 15/16, ExCeL London) to chair a panel of
experts debating “Tourism and Human Rights: Time to
Organized by the Tourism Society and Skål
International, the event will examine what airlines,
wholesalers, hoteliers and tour operators should do
about improving human rights.
"Travel and tourism has huge muscle power and an
ability to help the plight of men, women and
children whose basic human rights are abused or
simply ignored", said Jeffery. "This is a
challenging session with no easy answers, but it is
up to the industry to shoulder its share of
Other speakers include: Mok Singh, Immediate Past
President, Skal International; Mark Watson,
Executive Director, Tourism Concern; and Stephanie
Ossenbach, Project Manager and Corporate
Responsibility, Kuoni Travel.