Join us and the Rwandan High Commission in London for a critical conversation focused on investing in conservation, creating economic opportunity, and the responsibility of travellers to consider the impact of their journeys.
About the event
The vast impact of tourism on our natural environment offers a challenge and an opportunity. Countries globally are reckoning with the damage the industry can cause, particularly with the travel boom in recent decades. COVID-19 has brought tourism to its knees but has also presented a chance to reimagine what a sustainable, responsible industry looks like for governments, businesses, and individuals alike.
Rwanda received Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel 2021 ‘Wildlife Program’ Award and has been commended for leading in the sustainable and responsible tourism field, perhaps most notably through the conservation success story of the endangered mountain gorilla and their habitat.
Date: Thursday 4 February
Time: 4:30 - 5:30pm GMT
Her Excellency Yamina Karitanyi
H.E. Yamina Karitanyi is currently the High Commissioner for the Republic of Rwanda to the United Kingdom, and non-resident Ambassador to Ireland since December 2015.
Prior to her posting in London, from April 2014, Ms. Yamina Karitanyi was at the helm of the Tourism and Conservation portfolios at the Rwanda Development Board (RDB), the Government’s agency mandated with fast-tracking economic development in the country. During her tenure as Head of Tourism and Conservation, the Department saw innovative new products enhanced in Tourism, including the re-integration of Lions in Akagera National Parks and Rwanda’s conservation achievements have been highlighted on the global scene.
Ms. Karitanyi was appointed High Commissioner for the Republic of Rwanda to the Republic of Kenya, stationed in Nairobi, in May 2012, having previously served as Minister Counsellor at the mission since August 2010. During her tour of duty as High Commissioner to Kenya, trade and diplomatic relations between Rwanda and Kenya were enhanced significantly.
Having held various senior positions over 10 years at GoodWorks International, a strategic consulting and advisory firm that services multinational corporations and governments, in the USA and East Africa, prior to which she was Marketing Analyst at Carrier Corporation, Ms. Karitanyi has a proven track record in international business, operations management, business negotiations and Diplomacy.
H.E. Yamina Karitanyi holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Studies (1998) from Buffalo State College, USA, and an MBA from Rochester Institute of Technology (2000), USA. She is fluent in English, French, Kinyarwanda and Swahili.
Angelique Pouponneau is the Chief Executive Officer of the Seychelles’ Conservation and Climate Adaptation Trust. Currently worth about $22 million, the trust supports community-led projects on marine conservation and climate change.
She is a lawyer (Seychelles and UK,) and she holds an LLM in Environmental law specializing in the law of the sea and natural resources law. She is also a trained climate change negotiator under the AOSIS Climate Change Fellowship Programme at the United Nations.
Angelique has worked in different countries in the Caribbean, Pacific and the Indian Ocean on a wide-range of projects relating sustainable fisheries, sustainable management of marine biodiversity within and beyond national jurisdiction, and climate change – in particular, climate adaptation, loss and damage and climate finance. Further, she served as a legal expert of the African Group of the Sixth Committee in works of oceans and law of the sea at the United Nations.
Moreover, Angelique has experience working with civil society as a co-founder for a not-for-profit organization in Seychelles, and a Board member of a Commonwealth-wide youth-led organization.
Nicolle is a Group Account Director at GYK Antler, a boutique ad agency in Boston. She is also the co-founder of the Palau Pledge, a groundbreaking initiative to protect the Pacific Island nation of Palau, an archipelago of over 200 islands. Nicolle and her team collaborated with the government to design a mandatory eco-pledge which all visitors are required to sign upon arrival; entry visas are not issued to those who don’t sign. In December 2017, Palau became the first nation on earth that requires all visitors to take an oath to protect it. Nicolle and her collaborators designed a major campaign, including a film about protecting the island which is played on all flights arriving in Palau. The Pledge swept the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity awards, winning 3 Grand Prix, including the Titanium Grand Prix, the inaugural Sustainable Development Goals Grand Prix created in partnership with the United Nations, and a Grand Prix in the Direct category.
The Palau Pledge marks a huge milestone in the growing movement of conscious tourism - just two years ago, Palau turned most of its territorial waters into a 500,000 square kilometre marine sanctuary, banning commercial fishing and oil drilling in the reserve.
Moderator: Kehkashan Basu
Born in 2000, Kehkashan Basu joined the World Future Council as a Youth Ambassador in 2012, when she was just 12 years old, and is now the youngest councillor at the World Future Council. She has had significant impact on the global community with her work on children's rights, peace and disarmament, climate justice, gender equality and social upliftment. She is a United Nations Human Rights Champion, a Forbes 30 Under 30, a National Geographic Young Explorer, one of Canada's Top25 Women of Influence, the youngest Trustee of the Parliament of the World's Religions, a One Young World Ambassador and has been named as one of the Top100 SDG Leaders in the world in 2020.