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Steve Bridger Wins 2006 Colibri Ecotourism Award

COLIBRI WIKI

Publication Date: June 2006

Steve Bridger


FLICKR ALBUM: Colibri Award


To celebrate World Environment Day, Planeta.com today names Steve Bridger as the sixth annual Colibri Ecotourism Award recipient.

First presented in 2001, the Colibri Award is presented to a leader working toward ecotourism in Mexico.

The winner of the award is selected by Planeta.com founder Ron Mader following consultation with members of the Mexico Ecotourism Network.

Steve was selected for his work developing the timely afterwilma.info website which provided unprecedented coverage of recovery efforts in the aftermath of Hurricane Wilma. Steve has since developed a presentation: Blogging: Consider the Conversation.


ABOUT THE COLIBRI AWARD

Announcing this year's winner, Planeta.com founder Ron Mader said, "Ecotourism depends on the leadership of individuals exemplified by Steve Bridger who are resourceful and innovative and who are bold enough to bridge the traditional divisions between tourism and the environment."

Colibri means 'Hummingbird' in Spanish and in 2006 the Colibri Award celebrates its sixth anniversary, making this one of the longest-running ecotourism awards. The winner of the annual award receives a trophy, diploma and a $1,000 cash award from Emilio Kifuri, president of Canyon Travel.

"Mexico is one of the world's mega diverse countries with one of the most successful tourism industries," said Emilio Kifuri.

"If ecotourism is ever to overtake the senseless destruction of the world's natural areas, it certainly has to develop at a much faster pace. We feel fortunate to be in a position to demonstrate to the tourism industry that ecotourism can be more profitable than mainstream tourism. It is this potential for profit that has the greatest ability to cause the most profound changes."

WINNER

Steve was selected for his work developing the timely afterwilma.info website which provided unprecedented coverage of recovery efforts in the aftermath of Hurricane Wilma and the development of sustainable tourism in the region.

Steve Bridger is the first non-Mexican winner of the Colibri Award. Based in Bristol, England, Steve and wife Gicela Morales (born in Tolimán, Querétaro) created nfp 2.0 as well as the popular Mexicanwave website, winner of the 2003 Pluma de Plata given by the Mexican government.

Steve Bridger is passionate about Mexico and his goal is to inspire and educate so that more people become aware of the 'real' Mexico.

In 2005 Steve launched afterwilma.info to document "the Story of Cancún and the Riviera Maya getting back on its feet." This is a great example of citizen journalism and commons-based peer production.

Steve explains in his blog's about section: We all saw the scenes of devastation on the TV news bulletins. We rarely get to see - or read - of the recovery ... It is now a conversation. Word-of-mouth is more powerful than an expensive TV ad.

Steve coined the concept of a buzz director for people inside organisations who champion the use of social media to effect positive change. Steve has earned a bit of a reputation for not shying away from asking challenging questions of charities around issues of transparency and sustainability in the 21st century.

CRITERIA

Planeta.com presents the Colibri Ecotourism Award to those whose work in Mexico is exemplary and who share what they learn. Good ideas require good work to come to completion and good work needs to be documented so that lessons can be shared.

Nominees participate by helpful edits, connecting using Web 2.0, Planeta Wiki or contribute editorial suggestions for at least a year. Bonus points are given to those who participate on other websites and forums. This is part of Planeta.com's desire to create incentives for communication, collaboration and continuity, all vital elements in the development of responsible travel and ecotourism.

 


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TESTIMONIALS

Steve's website is a practical tool for people to know what is really happening.
- Kenneth Johnson, EcoColors

Steve and Gicela, I'm so proud of you for achieving this recognition. It is a very important achievement and great acknowledgment for the hard work and dedication your company has put forth in showing the authentic Mexico while preserving the natural environment and traditions. Congratulations!
- Manuel Diaz-Cebrian, Director, Mexico Tourism Board, United Kingdom, Ireland and Scandinavia

Afterwilma.info is clearly very much appreciated and a great source of news and information. A beacon for the immediacy and power of the web when used well.
- Peter Hutchison, Author Footprint Guide to Mexico and Central America

Steve's work as a journalist shows his commitment to sustainable tourism and Mexico. Congratulations!
- Jennifer Morfin, Colibri Winner 2005

Afterwilma gives us reliable information about Cancun and the Riviera Maya. It's not sensationalistic (noticias amarillistas), but a frank account of what is taking place on the ground. Steve's view of responsible tourism is what we need to see Mexico with new eyes.
- Marlene Ehrenberg, Colibri Winner 2002

¿Cómo mantener información tan actualizada sobre México a algunos millares de millas de distancia? Al leer los blogs de Steve Bridger, mexicanwave.com y afterwilma.info, uno pensaría que se encuentra al pie del cañón, caminando diariamente senderos mexicanos. Evidente es que Steve ha viajado frecuente y profundamente en México a lo largo de los últimos años. Sin embargo, no deja de sorprender que en sus blogs se encuentra información actualizada a veces diariamente o semanalmente. Y que estas actualizaciones se hacen desde un rincón al suroeste de Inglaterra. Sin duda esto se logra porque Steve es un estupendo editor. Tiene los vinculos para poder tener una red de ojos y orejas así como un olfato por la información que enriquece su información. Pero sobre todo enriquece a los lectores en busca de información de primera mano. Y con esta información favorece un diálogo y crea una red de distintos participantes en el mercado turístico. Dialogo e informacón imprescindibles en el mundo actual donde cada vez hay más viajeros responsables en busca de información cierta y responsable. Al ser Steve una persona con la capacidad de tener los ojos bien abiertos no es de soprender que también sea un estupendo fotógrafo. El trabajo de Steve, como editor y fotógrafo, motiva e inspira.
- Fernando Garcia Aguinaco, Colibri Winner 2003


ABOUT WORLD ENVIRONMENT DAY

The United Nations General Assembly established the first World Environment Day in 1972 to mark the opening of the Stockholm Conference on the Human Environment.

"Stockholm was without doubt the landmark event in the growth of international environmentalism," writes John McCormick in Reclaiming Paradise. "It was the first occasion on which the political, social and economic problems of the global environment were discussed at an intergovernmental forum with a view to actually taking corrective action."

Another resolution led to the creation of the United Nations Environment Programme.


KUDOS

Many thanks to friends and colleagues who are relaying the word about the Colibri Award including IMAC, Florcanto, green-travel, emediawire, Mexpat and the United Nations Environment Programme.

MORE ABOUT THE WINNER

b Humble Hummingbird - Steve Bridger/afterwilma
b Media Release
b afterwilma.info
b Mexicanwave
b npf 2.0

FLICKR

b Mexicanwave
b Moo cards for blogging workshop
ONLINE FLICKR




REFERENCES

Planeta.com
Colibri Ecotourism Award
Short history of the Colibri Ecotourism Award
Reflections on Awards
World Environment Day
Colibri Slideshow b

Colibri

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