Connaissance de Ceylan has always been an advocate of empowering its stakeholders especially those working with them. In collaboration with Alliance Française de Kotte, Connaissance de Ceylan has introduced a French language course adapted to the needs of regional chauffeur guides totally free of charge. Working with SLAITO, Connaissance has opened up to the other DMCs registered with SLAITO to nominate their chauffeur guides for this project. Divided in to two levels of study as ‘Beginner’ and ‘Intermediate’, this intense course of 60 hours for six weeks will accommodate 32 chauffeurs, and envisages to provide the participants with an exposure to practical French language and basic language skills focused on tourist guiding. Classes would be held at the Alliance Française premises in Colombo.
The participants of the course would be awarded a certificate from Alliance Française de Kotte upon the successful completion of the course. Further, the participants are entitled to a field trip to the Cultural Triangle, staying sponsored by Theme Resorts & Spas, the official tourism partner of this venture. “I believe that this is a timely initiative to boost the skills of the regional chauffeur guides, which will help them better sustain their livelihood when international French tourism thrives again, which hopefully is not far,” stated Chandra Wickramasinghe, the veteran hotelier and Chairman of the Connaissance de Ceylan.
“Since 2018, the number of French tourists arriving in Sri Lanka topped 100,000 and French speaking tour guides were scarce. In this light, having a basic French training will be a good advantage for the freelance chauffeur guides to acquire a better fee for their language skills, he further elaborated .”