On July 30 and 31, the Pirin Tourism Forum Association, in partnership with the Rila National Park Directorate, the Regional Inspectorate of Environment and Waters in Blagoevgrad and the Southwest University of Neofit Rilski, organized in Blagoevgrad a workshop under the joint project entitled Reinforcing protected areas capacity through an innovative methodology for sustainability, acronym BIO2CARE. The project is funded by the INTERREG V-A Cooperation Programme Greece – Bulgaria 2014 – 2020.
The workshop was dedicated to the presentation of project results, firstly the Sustainability Labeling Scheme developed jointly by Bulgarian and Greek experts, for products and services originating from the territories of or the vicinity of the national parks of Rila and East Macedonia and Thrace (Nestos River Delta in Greece). The benefits which such a scheme could bring to the environment, business and citizens, were presented to the public.
The other project results which the participants from the region of Rila NP got acquainted with included the newly built Visitor Center at the Park Directorate in Blagoevgrad, the specialized nature trail close to Parangalitsa Reserve which is currently being adapted for visits from people with special needs, the developed and adapted to the Bulgarian and Greek conditions scientific methodologies for better management of protected areas, and more.
The workshop ended at the Visitor Center of Rila NP in the resort of Panichishte above the town of Sapareva Banya. There, the participants were informed about the developed report with guidelines for the Rila NPD about the sustainable management of visitor centers of protected areas. The BIO2CARE Project is to be concluded in October this year.