visits4u seminars in Rhodes

The Municipality of Rhodes in cooperation with the Social Cooperative Business “Asklipiades” successfully held four (4) training seminars in Rhodes aiming to build capacity of tourism industry staff and entrepreneurs on access and inclusion.

Seminar manual front cover with the title of the event and the project. Logos of the organisers and supporters are at the top and the bottom of the page respectively. A photo of the city of Rhodes is superimposed by an outline of a diverse group of people, suggesting access for all.
An image of the seminar manual front cover.

The seminars took place in October 2016 at different venues across the city: Elysium Resort and Spa Hotel, Rodos Palace Hotel, the City Hall and the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Dodecanese.

The content and delivery were tailored to SME’s professionals, public bodies, chambers and associations. Host speakers included Mr. Theodoros MAKOS, Employment Office Manager at the Greek Manpower Employment Organization, and Ms. Marily CHRISTOFI, Surveying Engineer and Accessibility expert for disabled people at the National Confederation of Disabled People. Moreover, experts on accessibility from the Municipality and “Asklipiades” presented the project and elaborated on relevant topics. The areas covered included the legal framework regarding the Disability Discrimination Law, Health and Safety building regulations in Greece, attitudes towards disabled people, government programs supporting employment of disabled people, good practice examples on accessibility, particularly on spatial, visual and acoustic access.

More than forty (40) people attended the seminars including representatives from the Municipality of Rhodes, the Association of Disabled People in the Province of Rhodes, the Hellenic Tourism Organization, the Commercial Association, the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Dodecanese, the Travel Agencies’ Union of Rhodes and the Hotel Owners’ Association of Rhodes.

Presentation by the Municipality of Rhodes during held at the seminar at the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Dodecanese.
Presentation by the Municipality of Rhodes.

Participants were given a manual with practical information and guidance on how to identify access barriers and find solutions to remove them. The majority of participants also stated that the topics were in general interesting, relevant to their work and very useful for future improvements regarding accessibility and how they could further improve their services in terms of sustainability.

All events were greatly supported by public and private entities, who welcomed the project and contributed their resources – such as venue and printing facilities – towards the seminars.

If you want to get involved in the project in Rhodes, Greece, you can contact the Municipality of Rhodes or “Asklipiades” directly (details here:


Further links:

Municipality of Rhodes:

Social Cooperative Business “Asklipiades”:

National Confederation of Disabled People

Greek Manpower Employment Organization:



Visits4u project

July 2016 marked the launch of ‘visits4u’, an 18 month project that will develop and deliver inclusive tourism training and capacity building to improve user experience and sustain inclusive design in tourism. The theme resonates the message of this year’s World Tourism Day on 27th September, which focuses on ‘Tourism for all – promoting universal accessibility’.

The rationale behind the project derives from relevant research and developments across Europe showing that staff attitude is ranked as a key factor for an enjoyable experience. The quality and availability of the right information to visitors are both considered equally important. visits4u will, therefore, aim to address better customer satisfaction under the inclusive tourism narrative, focusing on enhancing staff skills and improving information accessibility. This will be implemented through training, seminars for local tourism companies, case studies – demonstrating that access means good business – and toolkits to help embed inclusive practices in the field.

The action is structured in four Work Packages:
1. Capacity Building
2. Research and Itinerary Design
3. Product Development and Implementation
4. Dissemination and Evaluation

By the end of the project in each partnering country, visits4u aims to establish stronger networks of tourism businesses alongside increased confidence, knowledge and commitment to making their services more accessible and, as a result, eventually more sustainable. Click here for further details about the project.
Following the introductory months, partners visited London to attend a two day training course and hold the first partnership meeting on 5th – 6th September 2016. Read more about it here.

Visits4u in London

Following the introductory months, partners visited London to attend a two day training course and hold the first partnership meeting on 5th – 6th September 2016.

The training focused on access and inclusion, exploring the benefits of universal design and inclusive management practices to meet the needs of all users. It provided delegates with good practice examples and techniques on how to identify potential barriers to access, alongside solutions to improve accessibilty and customer service for tourists and visitors.

The programme included a presentation by Ross Calladine, Head of Business Support at Visit England who shared his experience on how to support tourism businesses develop accessible itineraries and a visit to the Victoria and Albert Museum, where Barry Ginley, Equality and Access Officer, presented the museum’s policies on inclusive environments.

Group photo at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, September 2016 © CAE
Group photo at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, September 2016 © CAE