Case Study: The Effectiveness of In-kind Donations: Fair Trade in Tourism South Africa

Tuesday, 16 November, 2004 - 10:37

This is a case study of Fair Trade in Tourism South Africa,First Annual Stakeholders Meeting, from 3-4 March 2004.

This is a case study of Fair Trade in Tourism South Africa,First Annual Stakeholders Meeting, from 3-4 March 2004.

Fair Trade in Tourism South Africa (FTTSA) is a non-profit marketing organisation established by IUCN-South Africa that grants a “Fair Trade in Tourism” trademark label to tourism establishments that operate fairly and responsibly. With a Fair Trade label, a third party ensures that individuals involved in the tourism business are treated fairly, that they receive fair wages, that there is a fair system of employment and that local resources are utilised to benefit communities and the local economy. FTTSA is committed to gender equality and diversity through its core values: fair share, democracy, respect, reliability, transparency and sustainability.

With its unique and progressive concept of transforming the South African tourism industry, FTTSA has garnered the support and interest of different donors and partners. Currently, FTTSA is funded by the UK Department for International Development (DFID) Business Linkages Challenge Fund (BLCF) and Hivos (Dutch Humanist Institute for Co-operation with Developing Countries). PSO/ Green Development Foundation, also from the Netherlands, is its newest funder. Other partners include the Tourism Enterprise Programme (TEP) and Ashoka.

FTTSA is a member of the South African Tourism Services Association (SATSA) and Tourism Business Council of South Africa (TBCSA). Jennifer Seif, National Coordinator of FTTSA, also sits on the board of TBCSA.

Background to the Annual Stakeholders Meeting

Since the days when it was first initiated as a pilot project in 1999, FTTSA has experienced tremendous growth. With the announcement of the world’s first round of FTTSA Trademark Users on 22 October 2003, and the captive attention of individuals passionate about fair and responsible tourism, the beginning of 2004 was an ideal time to hold the first Annual Stakeholders Meeting (ASM).

Throughout its involvement in the tourism industry in South Africa, FTTSA has strived to build and maintain healthy partnerships and relationships with others in the trade, and has established linkages with South African private and public sector bodies. Based on such strong networks, the planning and implementation of the ASM was possible with very limited resources. FTTSA was able to use creative resourcing, the ability to find new ways of engaging the resources in the local environment, to support this event, primarily through the gathering of in-kind resources and also funds from long-term donors of FTTSA. Fundraising is a single element in a well-constructed resource mobilisation plan and is far too limited to ensure sustainability.

The ASM was a success, attracting media as well as many stakeholders affiliated with FTTSA including local and provincial government, consultants, NGO and industry representatives. The function helped build the FTTSA brand and Trademark as a marketing and awareness tool.

Through the generous support and donations of organisations from the corporate sector, trade associations and statutory bodies, FTTSA was able to organise the event within a reasonable budget. This report will detail the steps taken to secure the required resources, and consider why FTTSA is successful in its resource mobilisation.


Giulia Carbone, Tourism Programme Coordinator at UNEP, gave FTTSA the members list of the Tour Operators Initiative (TOI), a group of tour operators dedicated to sustainable tourism. FTTSA decided to find a TOI member to be the keynote speaker the ASM.

Discovery Initiatives, which works towards conservation and responsible tourism, interested us because their mandate is aligned with that of FTTSA. Giulia confirmed that Julian Matthews the MD of the progressive UK- based tour operator was an effective speaker. We proceeded to contact him in November to ask if he was interested in coming to South Africa to share his knowledge and experience in his business, and Julian agreed.

Julian Matthews arrived in South Africa to make presentations both in Sandton, Johannesburg (3 March 2004) and in Cape Town (4 March 2004). FTTSA needed to provide accommodation and transportation to host a guest speaker, so we approached a few individuals from the corporate sector to assist us. In terms of resources, we needed international return tickets (UK-SA) for Julian; domestic return tickets (JHB-CT) for Julian, Jennifer and Ada; bednights in Johannesburg and Cape Town; venue and catering in both Johannesburg and Cape Town; and per diem for two FTTSA staff and honorarium for Julian.

Methods of Generating Funds and Resources

  • Travel

    British Airways
    The British High Commission provided a contact from British Airways (BA) who had helped other organisations secure complimentary tickets for international marketing purposes. A request for tickets was sent before the Christmas Holidays and the BA representative working at Meropa Communications responded to us in mid-January. BA supports the work that we do and agreed to sponsor return flight tickets (Heathrow – Johannesburg) for Julian Matthews.
    1x Return ticket from London to Johannesburg, value: R62 247

    South African Tourism
    We approached SA Tourism for domestic tickets from South African Airways for Julian in mid-January (JHB-CT, Durban-JHB) and were told that it was possible.
    1x Johannesburg - Cape Town, value: R 1 451
    1 x Durban – Johannesburg, value: R 854

    Southern Africa Tourism Services Association
    We requested two rebated return tickets from a service that SATSA provides for its members who are travelling domestically to do international marketing. SATSA approved the tickets in February for Jennifer Seif and Ada Chan (JHB-CT-JHB).
    2x Johannesburg - Cape Town, value of discount: R1 548

  • Accommodation

    Intercontinental Sandton Sun and Towers
    While discussing possibilities of using the venue at Sandton Sun, we requested free bed nights for Jennifer Seif, Julian Matthews and Ada Chan for the night of 2 March and this was approved.
    1x 3 bednights, Value: R8 085

    Spier Leisure
    For the night of 3 and 4 March, Jennifer Seif, Julian Matthews and Ada Chan were offered complimentary bed nights at Spier Leisure, one of FTTSA’s Trademark Users.
    1x 3 bednights, Value R 7740

  • Venue/Catering

    Sandton Sun and Towers, Johannesburg
    We used Sandton Sun and Towers as the venue for Julian’s presentation on 3 March as it is a central location. The Conference package was for 75 people with catering. A smaller room for ten people was booked for the afternoon strategy session. The cost for this room was waived.
    Room Rental Value, R1265

    Nelson Mandela Gateway Theatre, Cape Town
    The admission fee of the attendees for the event covered the cost for usage of the Nelson Madela Auditorium in Cape Town. FTTSA donated R2000 towards the catering of the finger lunch for the Cape Town event.
    Cost R750 including equipment
    Entry Fee pp: R50

  • Financial Funding

    We requested support in any form from the Provincial Gauteng Tourism Authority (GTA) who donated R10 000 for FTTSA to use towards the ASM. (Refer to Budget).

    Why FTTSA is Sucessful?

    A healthy overall funding scheme, which FTTSA practices, nurtures easy access to funding towards special events such as the ASM. FTTSA uses a Resource Mobilisation model that sets out to secure money, goods, services, goodwill, partnerships, and human resources to ensure the survival of the organization. To operate, FTTSA requires a range of commodities, not just financial funds. To fundraise, funds have usually been secured through proposal writing, mail appeals, campaigns, and special events.

    Fazila Farouk, one of the facilitators at the 5th International Workshop on Resource Mobilisation stated that FTTSA has a diverse sustainable plan. Through Creative Resourcing, FTTSA finds new ways to leverage support from its local environmental to become self-sustaining.

  • Entrepreneurial
    FTTSA works collaboratively with a variety of individuals and partners outside the organisation. Partnerships and linkages are empowering, unlock resources and also facilitate co-learning and improve impact.
  • Marketing
    Using the capacity to develop and use information to promote effectively the FTTSA Trademark to its full potential, FTTSA effectively raises its brand awareness. FTTSA also uses public relations to develop dialogue with various stakeholders to allow partners to participate in the life of the organisation. Free publicity from media interest also helps give us free exposure and promotions. The ASM benefited from this form of publicity.
  • Partnerships
    FTTSA has formed partnerships with government. Government departments are valuable partners that contribute to co-learning and synergy for non-profit organizations (NPOs). Being a part of the DEAT initiative Tourism Transformation Forum opened new networks of like-minded organisations and individuals working towards responsible and fair tourism for FTTSA.

    Individuals and companies from the private sector can also be partners with FTTSA. Sometimes, they are available for funding, advice and technical assistance. NPOs are increasingly receiving assistance with training marketing, publicity, advertising and organisational development from corporations and businesses. In the past, FTTSA has received discounted services and free consultation from businesses including Adams & Adams and Grant Thronton. We also receive NPO rates for many services including advertising. In addition, many businesses prefer donating their products rather than money. Donated goods and services, or in-kind donations, are budget relieving and help meet financial commitments.

    Partnerships with other NPOs and programmes enable NPOs to mobilise additional funds, manpower and expertise.

  • User Fees
    Two to three percent of FTTSA’s budget comes in the form of fees paid by Trademark Users. Annual fees are determined along a sliding scale---by the size of each establishment and their yearly income. This percentage is hoped to increase with more Trademark Users and also an increased cost of annual fees as the FTTSA Trademark becomes more recognisable. User fees are invested in a Reserve Fund.
  • Intrapreneurial
    Organisational:Intrapreneurship is the capacity of being innovative within the organisation. Developing this trait in resource mobilisation creates an enabling organisational environment for creative resourcing. To this end, the entire organization needs to have a resources mobilisation and management interest in everything it does. FTTSA is successful in this regard because of its supportive and enabling environment.

    The FTTSA staff has a strong commitment to and understanding of fair trade in tourism to bring about positive change and to form the foundation of a passionate organisation that works towards making a positive impact on the socio-economic and environmental landscape of South African tourism.

    With clear ethics, systematic administration and entrepreneurial spirit within the organisation, FTTSA maximises its efficiency to improve organisational capacity and to have a greater and more sustainable impact. FTTSA is also confident in the work it does, believing in and having motivation to implement its strategic plans are important when driving a progressive vision.

    In terms of administration, FTTSA is strong at managing its finances; getting the best possible value is crucial to successful resource management. FTTSA has a policy of comparing three quotes for any major spend.

  • Human Resources
    FTTSA currently hosts an Intern and a Junior Professional Officer, which are posts funded by the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) and the Swedish International Development Agency (SIDA) respectively. The Green Development Foundation in the Netherlands funds salary for the Development Officer.
  • ASM
    FTTSA practices a system of Monitoring and Evaluation, to see how effective strategic actions are so that unproductive tasks or projects can be terminated and productive ones continued.

    We noted from the Monitoring and Evaluation during February and March 2004, that the ASM had been a useful marketing tool. In February, we only had one enquiry through phone, while we had 13 during in the month of the ASM. Also, our web visits have gone up from 5519 in February to 7232 in March. We did not have any requests for partnerships in February, but in March we had 6. FTTSA also appeared in national media including radio and newspapers during the week of the ASM (See Appendix B). Because of such indicators, having another ASM next year would be part of FTTSA’s Strategic Planning.

    FTTSA is known in the tourism industry as a non-profit organistion. With this reputation comes a stereotype of being an entity that is unreliable, inefficient and unsustainable. However, with support and partnerships with other non-profits, public and private sectors, FTTSA is perceived to be a credible organisation.

    Having a world leading tour operator in the international private sector such as Discovery Initiatives champion our cause raises the profile of the organistion as one that should be taken seriously. The presence and active participation of Tanya Abrahamse, CEO of TBCSA and Sheryl Ozinsky, Manager of Cape Town Tourism at the presentations also gave FTTSA more credibility in the eyes of stakeholders who attended the events. This in turn will help gain further support from potential partners and donors. We had allocated R30 000 for this function and at the end spent just over R15 000.

  • Opportunities
    If more time were allotted for the organisation of this event, FTTSA could diversify funding for more opportunities to build partnerships and acquire more resources including financial capital.

    To approach foundations for funding in the future, FTTSA should find out the criteria and deadlines beforehand and begin submitting applications early in the year. For example, the Travel Foundation has an application process that takes over four month with approval taking place only on two dates: 10 May 2004 and 11 October 2004.

    In terms of logistics, FTTSA should not charge entry fees if they are able to secure more funding. Future ASMs should grant fair access for all interested stakeholders, not just those who can afford to pay a cover charge.

    With the success of FTTSA’s in-kind donations towards its first annual ASM, FTTSA should continue appealing for in-kind donations from the private sector as well as trade associations.

  • NGO Services

    NGO Services

    NGO Events

    S M T W T F S