Destination IQ a Deadly Event

Over 150 business leaders, employers, government representatives, tourism organisations, Native Title holders and community organisations gathered at Twin Waters Sunshine Coast to discuss and strategies opportunities for First Nations tourism in Queensland.

The event was hosted by the Queensland Tourism Industry (QTIC) Council under the direction and guidance from the QTIC Indigenous Champions Network.

Daniel Gschwind, Chief Executive, Queensland Tourism Industry Council (QTIC) said, “It is great  to come together at a destination like the Sunshine Coast with a focus on Indigenous tourism. We have a great assembly of professionals from across the state to not only enjoy this great destination but to engage in genuine discussion and engagement for the future and to map out how we can develop this great state with an Indigenous perspective”.

Destination IQ had a full lineup of speakers including international guest Keith Henry, President and CEO of Indigenous Tourism Association of Canada.

Mr Henry provided insight into First Nations tourism in Canada and shared experiences about a variety of strategies to that have yielded very strong positive outcomes for Indigenous tourism in Canada, led by industry.

“It is an honour to be here today and it is great to see a number of representatives here. We have a story to tell and an opportunity to share our culture,” Mr Henry said.

Mr Henry continued, “Indigenous tourism needs to be market driven. In your thinking as much as we want to get emotionally attached, the fact is that if we want to help Indigenous communities and businesses, we need to create businesses that will be sustainable”.

Throughout the day the event showcased First Nation business case studies, informative talks, panel discussion and the release of the First Nations Tourism Potentials Plan.

“Our goals are to promote recognition and respect of First Nations culture, engagement in partnerships, strategic coordination to provide advocacy and support, train and skill the workforce, authentic product development and positioning and promoting First Nations experiences in Queensland,” Mr Costello said.

Destination IQ was a sold out event with participants leaving with a new understating of the opportunities and challenges First Nations tourism businesses face and a plan to move forward with a more sustainable approach.

Thank you to the sponsors of this event; The Star Entertainment Group, Department of Innovation Tourism Industry Development, Matchworks, Brisbane Marketing, Griffith University and Indigenous Business Australia.

Plans are already in place to make 2020 Destination IQ even bigger and better.