Driven by passion Kiarake Karuaki strives to ensure that her island home of Kiribati reaps the benefits of community-based tourism and achieves sustainability.
She does this through capacity building, awareness, product development, licensing, monitoring, and supporting the development of niche tourism products, both new and existing, within Kiribati.
Kiarake is the Tourism Officer for Product Development with the Tourism Authority of Kiribati. Her primary responsibility is to work closely with local communities to develop community-based tourism products that would enhance their food security in climate change.
“Throughout my years of work with the development of CBT in Kiribati, I realised how CBT is a key contributor to achieving sustainability. It promotes cultural preservation, conserves our resources, and is a source of income essential to the health of islands and oceans,” Kiarake mentioned.
“Without practicing sustainability in how we plan and develop tourism, there will be no such thing as a healthy island and ocean.”
Kiarake has been involved in various sustainable tourism initiatives in Kiribati that include the following: