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Lisa's Appartments - Giving Back to the Community

My Magazine 2024/01
2 min
In the heart of Kololi, The Gambia, Lisa and her husband, Sulo, have not just established a place for tourists to stay but a haven that resonates with the soul of the community. Lisa's Appartments, built with care and consideration, not only provides a warm retreat for visitors but also stands as a beacon of responsible tourism.

Upon entering Lisa's Appartments, the vibrant culture of The Gambia unfolds. Wooden masks, sand and oil paintings, Fula hats, and handicrafts from local craft markets adorn the rooms, narrating stories of local artisans. Not stopping at mere decoration, Lisa and Sulo promote the sale of these treasures, sharing contact numbers with interested tourists, thus bridging the gap between travellers and local artists. All arts and crafts on display in the apartments are for sale, and the proceeds go to the artists.

The commitment to community upliftment extends beyond the artistic realm. Guests are encouraged to support local shops by purchasing essentials like bread, sugar, milk, soap, and detergent from them. This simple act has a profound impact, directly contributing to the livelihoods of the nearby residents.

Lisa's connections with meat, seafood, fruit, vegetable, groundnut, and cashew nut vendors bring fresh, local produce to the doorstep whenever needed. Lisa also recommends local restaurants to her guests, fostering a genuine experience while supporting the local culinary scene.

Waste becomes a resource through thoughtful practices. A dedicated dustbin collects used cans and bottles, providing materials locals can repurpose. Old iron items find new purpose through a collector in the community.

Lisa's Appartments isn't just about accommodating guests; it's also about creating opportunities for the locals. A tip box ensures their hard work is recognized and distributed equally amongst the staff, and every piece of linen and curtain tells a story sourced from the vibrant Serekunda market.

Sustainability is ingrained in every aspect. Grass clippings from lawn maintenance become nourishment for donkeys, and clothes are tailored locally, supporting the skilled tailors of The Gambia. Trusted local guides, fishing guides, and reliable taxi drivers enrich the guest experience while contributing to the local economy.

The commitment doesn't stop there. A tap outside Lisa's Appartments provides free water for passersby, embodying the essence of giving back to the community. A new venture is underway—a restaurant offering soups, salads, sandwiches, and home-baked bread at affordable prices, ensuring that the local community can also partake in the culinary delights.

Lisa and Sulo have created more than apartments; they have woven a tapestry of community, compassion, and connection. Through every action, Lisa's Appartments stands as a testament to the transformative power of responsible tourism, leaving a lasting positive impact on The Gambia and its people.

If you're looking for a holiday that lets you experience the authentic Gambian culture and the chance to see the local way of life, try Lisa's Appartments! 

 

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