In December 2020, Good Life X announced its partnership with the Sri Lanka Tourism Alliance, initiating the ‘Grants for Tourism Resilience’ programme for SMEs in the tourism industry.
An initiative supported by GIZ – SME Sector Development Program Sri Lanka in cooperation with the Noah Foundation in Berlin, on behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) to support SMEs navigate the challenging economic environment brought on by the current global crisis.
An online session was held in collaboration with the two parties to announce the grant opportunity to potential SMEs and to outline the selection criteria. The criteria ensured that the SME applications taken into consideration were registered Sri Lankan based businesses in tourism with sustainability at the heart of its business, and having been in operation for a minimum of two years.
This initiative received an overwhelming response from the industry with more than 300 applications from tourism SMEs ranging from accommodation providers, to destination management companies and health and wellness focused businesses in the sector. The shortlisted applicants were then interviewed by a panel after which the top ten winners were chosen based on the sustainability and level of innovation shown and potential to bounce back in the business proposals submitted for the grant appraisal. Good Life X along with the Sri Lanka Tourism Alliance announced the following winners of the very first ‘Grants for Tourism Resilience’ program: Plantation Villa Ltd., The Rascals Kite Resort, Saraii Ltd., Leopard Trails Ltd., Surfing Wombats Ltd., Ahanghama Coliving Ltd., Nefelibata Travels Ltd., Handun Villas & Restaurants, Captain Fernando Ltd. and H.S.H Ayurvedic Care Ltd.
The selected winners will receive grants totalling €50,000 to be utilised in implementing their innovative sustainable ideas. This will help enable their businesses to become more resilient and create a lasting impact on the environment, local communities and/or local culture. The program also intends to provide the business with the opportunity to innovate and expand attraction from global markets.