FAO Regional Office for Latin America and the Caribbean

Tuis Kich B'en Community Tourism Cooperative

History and location of the experience

The Tuis Kich'Ben Community Tourism Cooperative was established on 27 April 2018, and is located in the canton of Linda Vista in the village of Tojcheche, which is in the municipality of Tacaná in the department of San Marcos. This department is in the southwestern region of Guatemala, bordering to the north with the department of Huehuetenango, to the south with the Pacific Ocean and the department of Retalhuleu, to the east with the department of Quetzaltenango, and to the west with the Mexican state of Chiapas. San Marcos is accessible from Guatemala City by taking the Central American highway CA1 to the departmental capital of Quetzaltenango, then national route 1 to the departmental capital of San Marcos, and following national route 12–N to the Linda Vista canton.

The cooperative is made up of 15 families, with 29 people actively participating in the business. Most of the participants are between the ages of 24 and 30, and include farmers, artisans, small-scale livestock breeders, oyster mushroom growers, local tour guides, and masonry workers.

What does it offer?

What does it offer?

The tourism business is based mainly on food and lodging, including cabins and inns with views of the Tacaná volcano, campsites, as well as food services in a restaurant with capacity for 25 people, which specializes in pizza prepared with oyster mushrooms. In addition to these services, it is possible to explore different trails and lookouts.

Visitors mostly come to the cooperative thanks to word of mouth recommendations, but in 2021 the cooperative set up an office in the municipality of Tacaná with the support of World Vision's Community Roots project, financed by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). The project financed three computers, sound equipment, desks, chairs, and projectors. In addition, it allowed the purchase of equipment for the camping area, including tents, binoculars, a professional digital camera, and the installation of an Internet connection.

To promote its services the cooperative has a Fan page on Facebook called TUIS KICH BEN Tourism Cooperative. With the aim of providing digital tools to the cooperative, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), through the Integrated Country Approach project (ICA) to promote decent jobs for youth in the agri-food system, has implemented the Digital Literacy programme on the Chispa Rural platform. The digital tools promoted by the programme include Word and Excel, the Zoom platform and the use of social networks, as well as WhatsApp.

Most of the members of the cooperative have smartphones for communication, with the youngest members being the most familiar with the use of mobile phones.

Location


Diagnóstico de Turismo Rural y Digitalización Cooperativa Integral de Servicios Especiales de Turismo Tuis Kich’Ben, R.L. Tacaná, San Marcos, Guatemala