The “Via Francigena. Road to Rome 2021. Start again!” initiative has been selected and is now on the official platform of the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO): the ‘Tourism for SDGs’ platform ". It represents a showcase and best practice, accessible worldwide, aiming at the relaunch of sustainable and responsible tourism after Covid-19.
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The platform, developed by UNWTO, frames a selection of inspirational stories, education and training activities, research projects, initiatives and events, including our relay march, in the context of the Sustainable Development Goals (so-called SDGs) , outlining the contribution of each of these practices to the global quest for sustainable development. As the UNWTO highlights, sustainable tourism must take full account of its current and future economic, social and environmental impacts.
The 17 SDGs were defined in 2015 by the United Nation’s Member States to set clear and shared objectives to pursue globally and unitedly until 2030. Tourism is only one of the many sectors and topics tackled by the official goals, yet the contribution of the Road to Rome event extends across many of them. Most relevantly, not only the Road to Rome initiative but the Via Francigena itself contributes to develop decent work and economic growth (SDG 8), sustainable cities and communities (SDG 11) and partnership for sustainability (SDG 17).
We are preparing a section on our website explaining how this is done in much more detail, and how the European Association of Via Francigena Ways (EAVF) continuously works to get closer and closer to the achievement of these sustainability goals. As we never forget about, the very constitution statement of our Association outlines that sustainable development is the fundamental goal of our work!