ITO Among Finalists of Culinary Tourism Leadership Award

Presented by the Culinary Tourism Alliance (CTA), the Ontario Tourism Awards of Excellence recognize those who work hard to tell the stories of growers, chefs and beverage producers. These awards are about the passion and excellence of those dedicated to advancing the culinary tourism movement in Ontario. Through their steadfast leadership and unique experiences, both winners and finalists set the bar for what culinary tourism in Ontario represents.

ITO is proud to be a finalist of the Culinary Tourism Leadership Award for our collaboration with Destination Northern Ontario (DNO). This partnership aims to produce a unique Northern Ontario food tourism offering built from the ground up. Winners will be announced on October 27th at TIAO’s virtual awards gala.

Read more about the finalists 

Indigenous & Tribal Perspectives on Agritourism

The International Workshop on Agritourism presents Indigenous & Tribal Perspectives on Agritourism

Event Details

Date: Nov 19, 2020
Time: 12:00 PM EST

Celebrating sovereignty and demonstrating the uniqueness of all tribes, this conversation seeks to broaden understanding of Indigenous led agritourism initiatives with a focus on the unity of human and ecological communities. Presentations will explore best practices for integrating agro-biodiversity conservation in tribal communities; how culture, tradition and history blends through the Three Sister Story; and how ancient connections apply to contemporary travel company design and marketing.

This series brings together farmers, researchers, service providers, tourism experts and many others to share their knowledge and experience from around the world. A total of ten virtual gatherings will be offered between September 2020 and May 2021 and will be updated here. The gatherings are free to attend, but advance registration is required.

Complimentary Registration 
Collaborations & Partnerships
in Tourism 

1 week left until ITO and ABM’s virtual networking event: Collaborations and Partnerships in Tourism!

In times of social distancing, this event aims to accelerate connection between Indigenous and non-Indigenous businesses and organizations through ten curated 20-minute online appointments. This networking event is a technology-facilitated trade show that will allow you to make valuable connections not only across Canada but across the world.

Here’s how it works: ABM ensures registrant projects and goals are a fit for the tailored ABM Indigenous Ontario network. Once registered, ABM delegates connect with potential business matches by reviewing detailed online profiles and selecting appointments with other businesses and organizations participating in the event. Learn more about the event here.

Event Details

Date: October 21, 2020
Time: 9:00am-1:00pm EDT

ITO members who are Indigenous business owners can register for FREE. 

Connect with the ABM team at 604-483-3532 or info@advancedbusinessmatch.com to get your discount code either before or after you complete your registration. 

Indigenous Tourism Forum of the Americas

The first ever virtual Indigenous Tourism Forum of the Americas is now LIVE! From Monday, October 12 – Friday, October 16th participants have the exciting opportunity to join the ongoing conversation surrounding the past, present, and future of Indigenous tourism. The forum will bring together community, tourism and government leaders to discuss development needs and priorities, to generate dialogue around tourism, and to empower Indigenous people so that collectively, they can amplify their voices to better determine their own fates and futures.

Tune in on October 15 at 1:20 PM EST, for a keynote speech from Kevin Eshkawkogan, President and CEO of Indigenous Tourism Ontario (ITO). The full schedule of events can be found on the Indigenous Tourism forum website.

TIAO Survey 8 Results

Thanks to the support of FedDev Ontario, TIAO has partnered with Public Affairs company Navigator to continue and expand their Evidence Generation Strategy (EGS) as they continue to track the real time effects of COVID-19 on the tourism industry. 

Key statistics from Survey 8

  • Government support must continue to avert catastrophic consequences: Two thirds of businesses (65%) state they would have shut down had it not been for government programs such as the Canadian Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS). 71% businesses have accessed some sort of government assistance.
  • Direct financial support is required: Businesses believe that with continued and prolonged government support they can survive into 2021. They identified tax breaks, the extension of CEWS, support for PPE costs and an improved commercial rent support scheme as essential.
  • Job losses have become permanent: Nearly 10% of businesses have laid off their entire staff; with the average number of employees lost on account of COVID-19 per businesses is 19.
  • Reduced capacity is the new normal: 51% businesses are open at a reduced or limited capacity, 15% are temporarily closed and 1% are permanently closed.

Read the report overview here.

Northern Ontario Recovery Grant Program

The Northern Ontario Recovery Program applications are open until December 31, 2020, with the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation (NOHFC) administering the new program. 

The new short-term Northern Ontario Recovery Program (NORP) aims to help businesses adapt to new COVID-19 public health guidelines and protect employees and customers. Companies can apply to NORP for assistance with projects that help them adjust to the impacts of COVID-19, such as, but not limited to:

  • Building renovations and new constructions
  • Customer and employee safety installations
  • Equipment purchases, including personal protective equipment (PPE)
  • Marketing for new business initiatives
  • Restructuring of business operations
Businesses who qualify for the NORP may receive up to $25,000 in grants. NOHFC will cover 100% of eligible project costs. Applicants must demonstrate that the amount requested from NOHFC is incremental and does not duplicate other supports received. 
On October 15th, 2020 11:00AM EDT, the ADAPT 2020 webinar series hosted by Tourism Excellence North will outline the NORP program, including how to apply for funding for your COVID-19 related project. There will be an opportunity to ask individual questions.

Register for the informational webinar below.

For more information about the webinar please contact: 
Karen Peacock, Senior Training Coordinator



CTV News: New Initiative Launches in Cornwall Looking for New, Safe Tourism Ideas
CORNWALL, ONT. — The City of Cornwall and Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry (SDG) Counties teamed up with the Ontario Tourism Innovation Lab to offer a new program looking for the next big tourism idea.

The Spark Program matches selected candidates with a tourism mentor and provides a source of financial support to help take great new tourism ideas to the next level of development or implementation. Spark Program winner and ITO member, Terry Jenkins of TJ Stables, was interviewed by CTV News to share her valuable networking and mentorship experience with Kevin Eshkawkogan. 

She said the mentorship went a long way in helping her business thrive. “Our mentor was so good at helping us determine which directions to go with the Indigenous tourism,” Jenkins said. She also noted that even if you don’t end up winning, the experience of the application will stay with you. “Every step of the way is a learning experience for your business. We were successful and there were other applicants that weren’t and they still felt like they benefitted from the experience.”

The program was launched at the beginning of October and is looking for applicants with ideas that could benefit the Bruce County, Cornwall & SDG Counties, and the Oxford County. Learn more about Tourism Innovation Lab and the Spark Program here.

      Indigenous Tourism Ontario
      1300 Hwy 540
      4 directions Complex Unit 4
      Aundeck Omni Kaning, Ontario

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