Serena Khaplu Palace – Responsible Tourism Initiatives

Poverty is prevalent in Khaplu with the community facing many environmental, health and education problems due to lack of resources and inadequate institutional capacity.

 

A significant percentage of domestic and international visitors to Khaplu have made financial & in kind charitable donations to various individuals, community groups, organizations and projects. Some donations are made in a responsible manner and others are not. Those done irresponsibly have long term negative effects on the community and can lead to increased corruption and a ‘dependency’ culture encouraging children and adults to ask tourists for money and goods which often results in negative encounters between locals and tourists.

 

At Khaplu Palace & Residence we encourage those guests who are interested in giving something back to the community to consider supporting one of the projects we support – no matter how big or small. Or at the very least before giving we suggest you talk to our manager Abbas Ali Khan who has years of experience in the area and understands what the priority needs are.

 

The following are some of the projects in Khaplu that you may wish to visit and that need your support:

 

–       The SH Technical School, Burra – located just 20 minutes from Khaplu the centre trains under privileged women in the art of wool spinning & weaving. The centre makes traditional woolen fabrics and topi’s and sells them to individuals and shops in Baltistan. The centre has trained some 67 women who previously were not earning an income and are now earning an average 2,000 to 7,000 rupees per month. A visit to the centre will give you an insight into the recently revived art of wool weaving as well as provide you with an opportunity to purchase some of their products to assist funding product development, marketing and the training of more women in the future.

 

–       A Women’s Vocational Training Centre in the heart of Khaplu. The centre aims to help the women of Khaplu to stand on their own feet by training them to make handicrafts and clothes, so that they can support their families in a dignified and respectful way. The centre needs continuing support in order to continue to be able to financially afford to train these women.