Tourists spend more than $200 billion dollars in developing countries every year, placing tourism in the top five export income-earning categories for 83% of developing countries. In the US, tourism revenue was $503.7 billion in 2016. Because of tourism’s economic impact, governments and private foundations award grants to protect and enhance the resource base on which tourism depends. Following are three grants to help fund tourism needs in the states and abroad.
This program is broader than tourism, but it can help support efforts that boost tourism in U.S. communities. Grants from programs through the U.S. Economic Development Administration assist communities in infrastructure development, local capacity building, and business development to help alleviate conditions of substantial and persistent unemployment in economically-distressed regions. Rehabilitation of historic properties is an eligible activity if there is significant job creation. Rural and urban municipalities and non-profits hoping to develop initiatives that advance new ideas and creative approaches to address rapidly evolving economic conditions are eligible to apply. Proposals and applications are accepted on an ongoing basis.
Bob Whitley had a tourism career spanning 40 years and was integral in creating Tourism Cares, which supports tourism throughout the world in many ways. When Mr. Whitley passed away, donations for Tourism Cares led to the creation of the Bob Whitley Memorial Fund. The fund continues to support groups that Mr. Whitley cared about, including the Honorary Rangers Program at Table Mountain National Park in South Africa and the Bruce Beckham NTA Mentoring Program.
This worldwide escorted travel company is also dedicated to preserving and restoring North and South American tourism sites. Since 2004, this foundation has awarded more than $250,000 to help sites such as Kenai Fjords National Park in Alaska and Freedom Trail Association in Boston. Last year, the group targeted “American Icons” for its funding. Awards have not been announced for the 2017-18 year. Watch the web site for new program announcements.
Photo Credit: Stuart Cale