JAM | Jun 13, 2024

Beyond tourism: Chukka Foundation emphasises environmental sustainability

Josimar Scott

Josimar Scott / Our Today

Reading Time: 3 minutes
Deputy chairman of Chukka Caribbean John Byles (right) speaks to the audience and the Florida and Caribbean Cruise Association PAMAC Summit welcome event at Chukka God Hope in Trelawny. Looking on are Chukka Caribbean CEO Marc Melville and CEO of the Florida and the Caribbean Cruise Association CEO Michelle Paige.

Chukka Caribbean Adventures last evening (June 11) hosted several stakeholders in the region’s cruise tourism industry at its Good Hope property in Trelawny, ahead of the start of the Florida and Caribbean Cruise Association’s PAMAC Summit at Hideaway at Royalton Blue Waters today.

The eco-adventure and tour management company held a welcome mingle in a bid to promote sustainable practices in the tourism sector and raise awareness of its efforts through its philanthropic arm, Chukka Foundation.

“I’m excited to highlight the incredible work we are doing at the Chukka Foundation, where our commitment to community empowerment and environmental stewardship drives everything we do. Imagine a world where tourism not only delights but also uplifts and preserves – this is the vision we strive to realise every day,” head of Chukka Foundation Melissa Terry said during her welcome.

Manager of Chukka Foundation Melissa Terry (right) provides an overview of the activities executed by the philanthropic arm of Chukka Caribbean. Looking on are Florida and the Caribbean Cruise Association CEO Michelle Paige and Chukka Caribbean CEO Marc Melville.

“Our goal is clear: to harmonise excitement of exploration with environmental stewardship and continue to be deeply embedded in the fabric of our local communities,” she continued.

Chukka Caribbean manages several tours and attractions across six Caribbean destinations – Jamaica, Belize, the Dominican Republic, Turks and Caicos Islands, Barbados, and the US Virgin Islands.

In Jamaica, Chukka operates the Good Hope, Sandy Bay and Island Village adventure hubs that provide guests with access to 10 locations. It is also the general sales agent for the Joy Spence Appleton Rum Experience in St Elizabeth.

“We are privileged to operate in some of the most beautiful and diverse ecosystems, and we recognize our responsibility to protect and preserve these natural treasures. At Chukka, we believe that the natural beauty of the Caribbean is not just our backdrop – it’s our responsibility. Each of our tours is designed with the utmost consideration of our ecological footprints they leave behind. We’re not just operating; we’re stewarding the rich landscapes that host us,” Terry told guests.

Activities for the evening included taking photos on a raft, yam relay, rum tasting in the Joy Spence Appleton Experience room, and a sampling of fare from the various destinations in which Chukka operates. Guests were also treated to a gastronomic journey of the various cultures that influenced Jamaican cuisine: escoveitch fish and bammy (Spanish and Taino), ackee in puff pastry and salt fish fritter (Africans and Sephardic Jews from Spain and Portugal), and curried chicken with white rice (Indians and Chinese).

Chukka Caribbean raised approximately US$15,000 for the foundation from the evening’s activities.


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