Protecting The Local Environment and Communities
All our hotels have been constructed according to the tenets of eco-sensitive architecture, using local materials, skills and labour wherever possible. The Khorog Serena Inn in Tajikistan also serves as a showcase both for local art, sculpture, textiles and handicrafts and a wide range of artifacts.
The Aga Khan Fund for Economic Development
The Serena Group is a part of the Aga Khan Fund for Economic Development (AKFED), which is committed to the development of tourism potential in selected areas of the developing world. As part of an extensive programme, which holds to the highest standards of environmental and cultural sensitivity, the fund’s tourism promotion agency, TPS Tourism Promotion Services, rehabilitates and manages a broad range of hotels and lodges, all of which make significant contributions to the economic growth, national heritage, and overall investment climate of the countries in which they are located.
Our environmental policy
We make optimum use of the latest technology in relation to: waste recycling; pollution-reduction and non-CFC use; low energy-use devices and heat recovery systems.
We also have our own plant and tree nursery using only indigenous plants to re-stock our grounds. Since it is our belief that environmental protection must extend into all levels of the community, the Group also offers community training on environmental responsibility. Wherever possible, we purchase all our foodstuffs from the local community, we also employ local musicians and dancers. In addition to this:
We also work with local schools to train children in dance, music and theatre.
We operate an out-reach programme to the orphanages and hospitals of the area which allows for visits from our staff, the provision of funds, the hosting of seasonal events and the provision of clothing and foodstuffs.
We promote local handicrafts, glassware, pottery, beadwork and clothing in our gift shop.
We create both temporary and permanent jobs for the local community. We also offer training and work-exposure programmes for school leavers.
We showcase cultural dance, costume, singing and cultural craft as part of our corporate undertaking to support and sustain the cultural heritage of our nation.
We work with a number of local schools, both by providing educational materials and by hosting environmental training sessions for the pupils.
Employee Wellness Programme
In order to promote the overall health of their workforce, Serena has also established the Employee Wellness Programme, which aims to address the holistic health needs of not only Serena’s staff, but also of the communities that surround their camps and lodges. In essence, the programme is devoted to reducing the incidence of accident and illness in the workplace, promoting healthy lifestyles, maximizing potential and promoting optimum quality of life.
In 2009, in collaboration if two other local NGOs the Khorog Serena organized the Roof of the World Musical Festival, which was the first of its kind and featured music, dance, theatre, handicraft exhibitions and a wide range of cultural classes.