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Food Craft Institute to conduct tourism training

By Our Staff Reporter

THRISSUR, JUNE 4. The Central Department of Tourism has selected the Food Craft Institute (FCI) and its 12 extension units in the State for conducting a novel training programme for various people who are likely to interact with tourists, starting from those running `thattu kadas' to the immigration staff in the airports.

Addressing a press conference at the FCI extension unit in Thrissur on Thursday, the Institute officials said that the Department had allocated Rs. 1 crore for the whole programme and out of that, Rs. 20 lakhs have already been availed of by the Institute.

The Department made it clear that resources would not be a constraint for the training programme to be conducted this year itself and that it was prepared to sanction more funds, if required, to the Institute, which is jointly sponsored by the Central and State Governments, the officials said.

The Institute has already conducted 17 such short-term training programmes at its Thrissur and Kalamassery centres, and the other 10 units are already in the process of launching such courses.

The duration of the courses ranges from one day to five days and the intake in each batch is between 20 and 40 students.

The Institute proposes to train 1,500 persons under this programme.

Giving the details of the topics of the three-day course for `Thattukada' or `daba' owners, they said that the training would cover etiquette, hygiene and cooking skills.

A scheme for training the staff of the small and medium-scale hotels would cover hygiene, behaviour skills and communication skills.

The one-day training programme for taxi drivers would include topics such as importance of tourism, etiquette, behaviour skills and first aid.

Client handling and behaviour skills, communication skills and importance of tourism would be the topics of study for the one-day training programme for the staff of the Customs, the Immigration and the Police Departments.

The overall objective of the programme titled `capacity building for service providers' is to create a network of facilities and people who are able to cater to the needs of tourists belonging to the low-income group, the officials explained.

Efforts are already on to motivate local bodies to send people from their respective areas for the training that is being conducted free at the FCI units.

Agencies such as the `Kudumbasree' are also being approached for selecting participants for the training programme.

The FCI (Kerala) Society Secretary, Thomas C. Joseph, official in-charge of the Thrissur unit, R. Rajan, and the course coordinator, K.K. Thankachan, were among those who were present.

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