POKHARA: Kamala Gurung of Kabregaun of Sardikhola-8 in Kaski was elated when her home stay initiative, which she had started along with village folks two years ago got official recognition today.
With Nepal Tourism Year 2011 kicking off, Pokhara Tourism Office gave her licence to run the home stay programme. This has cheered the entire village. Kabre village got the first license to run home stay programme as per the Home Stay Operation Procedure- 2067 prepared by Tourism and Civil Aviation Ministry.
Kaski CDO Sambhu Koirala gave the licence to Kabre Home Stay Management Committee Chairman Gurung today. Gurung said she and other locals would do more to give national and international recognition to Kabre village in the days ahead. “We are happy as the joint venture initiated by Kabre locals has paid off finally,” Gurung said.
Locals began the home stay programme informally to create job opportunities by serving tourists with local products two years ago, Gurung said. Home stay programme had started after a team of tourism entrepreneurs and media persons visited Kabre at the initiative of Trekking Agency Association of Nepal, Pokhara chapter, two years ago.
At present, Kabre village, deemed the centre of Gurung culture, can accommodate 40 tourists in 13 houses at a time.
Chairman Som Thapa of Pokhara chapter of Trekking Agency Association of Nepal said his association had imparted one-week and one-month-long training in baking, housekeeping and cooking to Kabre locals. “Preparations to run home stay programmes are under way in other villages too,” Thapa said.
The government has set certain conditions for the operation of home stay programme. They include house, rooms, beds, bathrooms, toilets, kitchen, dining hall, sanitation, and security. Official at Pokhara Tourism Office Sukraraj Koirala informed that at least five houses are necessary to run the programme. The community should have road linkages between houses, be safe from wild animals, have open space, and should be dust and mud free. Home Stay Operation Procedure 2067 states one has to manage entertainment, cultural and sightseeing programmes for tourists in the package.