The Travel Foundation has signed a deal with the Caribbean Tourism Organisation (CTO) to collaborate on sustainable tourism initiatives.

The industry charity signed a memorandum of understanding with the CTO last month as it seeks to develop projects with a bigger impact following a change of strategy in 2015.

Travel Foundation chief executive Salli Felton said: “Previously, we worked at helping to improve the situation one community at a time, which helps demonstrate sustainable tourism is possible but doesn’t bring it into the mainstream. Now we identify those who can make decisions in a destination [and] target them to work with.”

The first project with the CTO is an online training course for tourism ministries, authorities and tourism planning and development agencies in the Caribbean. More than 80 people have already enrolled, including permanent secretaries, junior ministers and destination managers.

CTO secretary-general Hugh Riley said: “The region is the world’s most tourism-dependent. Therefore, it’s imperative tourism is developed in a way that ensures long-term benefits and value for Caribbean residents and visitors.”

He describes the course as “enhancing regional knowledge and competencies in the theory and practice of sustainable tourism”.

The Travel Foundation has also embarked on a four-year project, managed by the UN Environment Programme (UNEP), to tackle carbon emissions and resource use in four tourism-dependent countries.

One of several partners in the €5 million project, the foundation will work in Mauritius and Saint Lucia mapping tourism supply chains and helping to identify policies to increase resource efficiency.

The Travel Foundation and Tui Care Foundation are also working in Jamaica to encourage tourists to engage more with the local economy.

Activities this year have aimed to improve the experience in craft markets, such as Harbour Street in Montego Bay. Almost 100 traders have undergone training.