Role of Tourism Awareness Group in Development of Way Kalam Waterfall at Way Pisang Forest Management Unit, Lampung Province, Indonesia
The Tourism Awareness Group is essential in waterfall management because they can develop sustainable tourism. This study aims to determine the role of the Tourism Awareness Group in managing the Way Kalam Waterfall at the Way Pisang Forest Management Unit, Lampung Province, Indonesia. Data were first collected through observation and interviews and then analyzed descriptively on planning, organizing, implementation, and monitoring. The results showed that the Tourism Awareness Group in Way Kalam Village had made short-, mid-, and long-term planning. In organizing, the group has made sure members have performed their respective duties. In actuating, activities are carried out correctly according to the plans. And in controlling, the work carried out by the Tourism Awareness Group is directly supervised by the village government. There needs to be motivation from relevant stakeholders so that Tourism Awareness Group can be more active.
Tourism involves various activities that allow tourists to gain insight, knowledge, and experience , and that is why it is becoming increasingly popular around the world. Being a profitable sector, tourism has an essential role in the development of an area . It can increase local income , create jobs and promote local culture, all leading to economic growth to the local community. If developed in the right way, tourism can be a sustainable source of community income . On the other hand, local community also plays an important role in tourism development - it can directly determine the success of sustainable tourism development . In nature conservation areas and protected forests, tourism development has to follow the principles of ecological, social, and economic sustainability .
Tourism management is an important part of tourism development, which consists of a series of processes such as planning, organization, implementation and monitoring of the existing tourist resources . Only good management can bring the best results of tourism, and lead to sustainable benefits , as it can attract tourists to visit the destination again and again . The POAC-based management is an efficient resource management approach . POAC, namely Planning, Organization, Actuating and Controlling, is a strategy carried out to deliver productive performance . Considering that tourism management will be more synergistic by establishment of community relationships , POAC-based tourism management must be supported by or involve local community . The way the community is involved in tourism development is by establishing a forum, like Tourism Awareness Group.
The Tourism Awareness Group, originating from the community, plays a strategic role in developing and managing the natural and cultural assets owned by an area as a tourist destination . As the leading partner in tourism development, the Tourism Awareness Group is expected to create superior human resources, and help improve the quality of tourist products and the competitiveness of tourist attractions.
A role is a set of actions or behaviors by an individual or group based on his or their status (position) in an environment . Tourism Awareness Group, as an informal community organization engaged in tourism, has an essential role in managing tourism potentials. Having the authority in managing local tourism resources, this group should have good knowledge and know their main tasks and functions in tourism management, including planning, implementation, and monitoring. In previous research, however, it was stated that the infrastructure was not well established and that the equipment and personnel were not good enough , leading to undesired management of tourism. In order to achieve desired management, the local government needs to provide support, such as training and counseling. This research aims to explore the role of Tourism Awareness Group in the management of Way Kalam Waterfall at Way Pisang Forest Management Unit, Lampung Province, Indonesia.
This research was conducted during October-December 2022 at Way Kalam Waterfall at the Way Pisang Forest Management Unit, Lampung Province, Indonesia. Administratively, the KPH Way Pisang area is included in the administrative area of Kalianda, Penengahan, Rajabasa and Bakauheni Districts, South Lampung Regency. KPH Way Pisang has an area of 5,160 ha, of which 176 ha is covered by primary forest, 3,148 ha by secondary forest and 1,836 ha by non-forest areas. There are a number of waterfalls in the Way Pisang KPH area, both small and medium-sized. They have been used by local communities as natural tourist attractions, one of which is the waterfall in Way Kalam Village.
The data used in this study were collected through observations and interviews. Observations refer to direct observations of the situation on the research location and collection of data on the conditions of the natural resources, and interviews were conducted with five active Tourism Awareness Group members and five related stakeholders. The data obtained were analyzed descriptively.
3. Results and Discussion
Way Kalam Village in Lampung Province, Indonesia has a waterfall called Way Kalam Waterfall, which consists of Indukan Waterfall (Figure 1) and Anakan Waterfall (Figure 2), with a height of 40 m and 10 m, respectively. There is a distance of 500m between these two waterfalls. Anakan Waterfall has colder water at it is located in a higher place. Indukan Waterfall is very beautiful, natural and cool, and flanked by cliffs whose walls see seepage of natural springs. Before enjoying the beauty of Indukan Waterfall, visitors must walk up the road by climbing stone steps. It usually takes about 15 minutes to get to the waterfall. In contrast, Anakan Waterfall does not require additional travel because when visitors arrive, they can immediately enjoy its scenery. Anakan Waterfall is equally beautiful; even at a distance, visitors can already enjoy the sensation of Anakan Waterfall. There is a pond at the bottom of Anakan Waterfall, where visitors can have fun in the water.
Way Kalam Waterfall is an ecotourism-based tourist attraction. It is located on Mount Rajabasa, where there are beautiful natural resources and diverse plant species. Currently, the waterfalls flow through 20 villages around Mount Rajabasa. Tours are managed by a group known as the Tourism Awareness Group of Way Kalam Village, established in 2013.
The Tourism Awareness Group of Way Kalam Village has made short-, medium-, and long-term planning. Planning, which has determined the facilities and infrastructure that will be used in order to achieve the planned goals. At the planning stage, what must be done, how to do it, and who will do it should be determined in the plan. Planning is one of the essential processes of management because it is the precondition for other functions to work. It involves selecting and connecting facts and using assumptions to develop the necessary activities in the future . The head of the Tourism Awareness Group revealed that,
“We have made the short-term plan, including rehabilitating the stairs, which has been included in the village development plan for 2023. Apart from that, we will also have the prayer room rehabilitated. The existing prayer room may not be usable any more. The parking lot also needs repair, as the floor is in a bad condition. In the medium term, we plan to build tree houses, crossing bridges, changing rooms downstairs, and resting places or shelters. We have conducted a survey with the village government. Later, there will be three rest areas along the way from the bottom up. In the long term, we will build structures for flying fox and rock climbing. To do this, we must coordinate again with the forestry assistants.”
Planning is essential for an organization’s continuity and progress . Specifically, short-term planning generally targets the activities within one year in the form of concrete policy steps. The Tourism Awareness Group has carried out short-term planning and included it in the 2023 Regional Revenue and Expenditure Budget. Its short-term plan involves rehabilitating stairs, repairing the prayer room, and repairing the parking lot. Medium-term planning targets the activities in the next 1-5 years. For the management of Way Kalam Waterfall, the medium-term plan is to build tree houses, crossing bridges, changing rooms, and resting places. A survey has been carried out with the village government; and it is planned that three resting places will be built along the road from the bottom up. Long-term planning describes the developments that you desire to realize in the long term . It is general and yet to be detailed and aims to provide a clear direction for medium and short-term planning. For Way Kalam Waterfall, the long-term plan is to build hanging slides and rock climbing facilities around Indukan Waterfall. A survey has been carried out regarding this plan, and the facilities will be manufactured under the assistance of Way Pisang Forest Management Unit.
Planning is the foundation of the subsequent organizing, actuating, and controlling functions . It is related to activities that will be carried out within a certain period . The plans that have been carried out and will be carried out must have the government’s support. In this case, those who support this planning are the Village Government, the Tourism Office, and Way Pisang Forest Management Unit. According to the Tourism Awareness Group,
“Yes, we have the support from the village government. The Tourism Office is also very supportive. Recently, we o had training, which was one of the tourism service programs. Indeed, most of the tourism services are more concerned with human resource development. Thank God, we have the support from two departments from forestry and also from the tourism office.”
In the development of Way Kalam Waterfall tourism, local government policies play a vital role. However, the government assistance alone is not enough, and in fact, local community, as the executor of tourist activities, also needs to play an active role in it. Tourism managed by both the government and the community will provide changes to the activities of local people who live around tourist sites. According to the Tourism Awareness Group:
“Actually, the plan starts from this year, but there is the problem with Covid. It can’t be said that Covid is over, and that’s why the village fund budget is still being trimmed. This year’s work will focus on stairs, the prayer room and the parking lot. Hopefully in 2023, the funds for Covid can be diverted to these developments.”
Funds are one of the resources that directly support the implementation of all activities in the program. One of the financial assistance in fulfilling this tourism program is the funds from the regional income and expenditure budget (Anggaran Pendapatan dan Belanja Daerah /APBD). Besides being constrained by funds, the tourism planning program is also constrained by the number of members. According to the Tourism Awareness Group:
“The problem is that right now we are short of members, because a lot of them have migrated. Previously there were 40 members, and now only 5 people are active, and the rest are migrating. The bachelors are looking for different experience, and sometimes those who are already married are also looking for other sources of income, because if this is your only income, it will not be sufficient to provide for a family.”
Sharing of profit from the management of Way Kalam Waterfall is carried out once every one to three months, based on meetings held by members. The Tourism Awareness Group, as the manager, gets 40% of the village-owned enterprises (Badan Usaha Milik Desa/BUMDES), and those who own land get 10%. Management requires the participation of members because it is very important to the success of planning. Factors that affect member participation consist of internal factors related to individual members of the community, namely age, level of education, number of family members, and length of stay, and external factors, which include tourism potential .
At the organizing stage, the Tourism Awareness Group in Way Kalam Village has made sure members have performed their respective duties. Human resources are one of the organizational resources that determine, whether the organizational goals can be achieved . The reason that the Tourism Awareness Group was established in Way Kalam Village is that there were only tours but no one was managing them. According to the members of the Tourism Awareness Group:
“In the past, there were frequent visits from the community, and sometimes from outside. At that time, the group had not yet been formed. When people came here, they would just enter the area and enjoy the natural beauty and that was it. Then, Mr. Ali Amin Said suggested, ‘why not take advantage of the potential that exists in this village, like the unemployed young people, to gain more income?’ And that was how the Tourism Awareness Group began to take shape. Incidentally, at that time there was a group called the Putra Krakatau Community (KPK) that coached us, including Mr. Akaria Anwar, Mr. Nasrullah. They were the ones who helped us to develop the tourism village project.”
An organization requires collaboration between individuals involved to achieve common goals . Organizing aims to utilize all available resources, especially human resources . It shows whether stakeholders have clear standard operating procedures to know what to do . The Way Kalam Village Tourism Awareness Group was formed in 2014 and chaired by Mr. Ali Amin Said. The background to the formation of the Way Kalam Village Tourism Awareness Group was the unmanaged waterfall tours and the initiative proposed by Mr. Ali Amin Said’s group to take advantage of the existing potential. At that time, one of the groups that guided the Way Kalam Tourism Awareness Group was the Putra Krakatau Community (KPK). There are 42 Tourism Awareness Group members, and only five are active. If activities require more than 5 members, the Tourism Awareness Group chairman will invite members who are not active but still in the village. What have caused the reduction in the number of active members is that some of them are young people in the village, who prefer to look for better jobs and higher income. Finally, they left the village one by one to look for their opportunities. According to the Tourism Awareness Group:
“There are actually a lot of members - 42 people, but there are only about 5 who are currently active. Initially, the 42 people were mostly young people who had dropped out of school and were unemployed. I recruited them. After that, over time, they might also have more attractive job offers and greater income, and in the end, one by one, they were permitted to go out of town looking for work. Thank God, right now, the remaining members are all active. Indeed, in this Tourism Awareness Group, we have involved the village government as well as the village apparatus. From the security perspective, we are from the pyramids.”
The organization determines the work, grouping, tasks and duties of each member. It also has rules that each member must obey. The purpose of these rules is to control and organize the organization. The Way Kalam Tourism Awareness Group needs specific rules to support the development of this tourism. According to the Tourism Awareness Group:
“There are no special rules. The rule is that when we are at work, we have to focus on work, be disciplined, and never play around because every guest wants good service. We have to serve what the guests need; even if they ask to be brought downstairs, we, as guides, have to drive them there; even if there are small children who ask to be carried, we will have to carry them. When the Tourism Awareness Group was just formed, there was a charge for the delivery of persons downstairs – they had to pay Rp50,000; now, we just do what they ask, and if the guests are to give tips, we will thank them.”
The Way Kalam Tourism Awareness Group was established based on the Decree issued by the Head of Way Kalam Village in 2014. The ways to recruit Tourism Awareness Group members include making announcements and informing the community, and in particular, parents who have teenagers who do not have a job. Member meetings are held once a month or even once every three months, according to the members’ agreement. If there are guests coming, the management will gather to make preparations. Up to now, only the active members have participated in the activities. This organizational structure comprises coaches, advisers, directors, and administrators. The management structure consists of a chairperson, a deputy chairman, a secretary, a treasurer, security and order section, cleanliness and beauty section, tourist attraction and memorial section, public relations and human resources development section, business development section, guide section, arts section, and documentation and publication section. Even though the organizational structure is complete, these members still need to understand their duties better.
After the planning process is completed correctly, the next step is to implement all the plans that have been prepared. The division of tasks has been carried out with the tourism manager. According to members of the Tourism Awareness Group:
“Regarding the division of tasks, if any tourism or forestry service is needed, we will give it to the relevant service department. For services needed on the location, we have our guides and our officers on guard at the location. Actually, there is already a schedule for shift change. For example, if the person on duty on Monday, cannot come, he will be replaced by someone who doesn’t have work that day, instead of leaving the position vacant. After all, the active members are the ones who have a greater sense of responsibility, and they also happen to be not so busy at that time. The number of visitors on weekdays varies. On weekdays, there are visitors but not as many as on holidays. So like it or not, someone has to take care of the work. Before covid, this place was always crowded; and now that covid is almost over, we have just started to be busy again.”
Actuating can be interpreted as determining what will be achieved and assessing performance . The actuating function is an effort to create an atmosphere of cooperation between program implementers so that organizational goals can be achieved effectively and efficiently . It is about implementing plans . At the actuating stage, members of the Way Kalam Tourism Awareness Group have carried out their duties according to the predetermined assignment. In these activities, the young people in Way Kalam Village have made a very minimal contribution, but not all young people have contributed little. At the actuating stage, the young people in the village are mainly to assist in running Way Kalam Waterfall social media accounts, which are essential as they can promote the tourist attraction and accordingly more people will visit it. The tourist attraction is crowded with visitors on Saturdays and Sundays, but receives fewer ones on Mondays and Fridays. The Tourism Awareness Group requires additional members to maintain the tourist sites and serve visiting tourists during holidays. According to members of the. Tourism Awareness Group:
“We used to change shifts every, but now there are only five admins at the village hall, so there are at most three persons working at the same time here. When the tourist sites are crowded, more than three members will be here. On a normal day, the sites are not crowded with visitors, and usually there are only ten motorbike visitors. But on Saturdays and Sundays, there are more.”
Whether or not the goals are achieved depends on whether all members of the group perform their duties . These members need directions and motivations to carry out activities. The Tourism Awareness Group motivates its members not by teaching them what to pursue but by telling them what they can give to the village. According to the Tourism Awareness Group:
“Yes, to motivate our members, we don’t actually teach them about the theoretical knowledge, but rather, we teach them how to build this village with tourism. Making money is only part of the benefits from joining the group. We ask them what they can do for this village if money is not considered here. We motivate our members like that. Yes, let’s build this village through tourism, as this is one of the natural resources that God has given us, and not those living in big cities. Why don't we manage it?”
Motivating members is essential, as it can make them feel confident, competent and not burdened by personal problems or other tasks, and can create harmonious relationships between members. The factors needed in actuating are leadership, attitude, morale, communication, and discipline .
Controlling refers to monitoring and supervision to ensure that activities are carried out according to plans. Without the controlling function, other functions will not run effectively and efficiently because it is carried out throughout planning, organizing and actuating. In the controlling function, an evaluation process ensures that all activities do not deviate from the objectives, and supervision is carried out so that the implementation of area management runs as optimally as possible to achieve management objectives . The Way Kalam Tourism Awareness Group evaluates errors or deficiencies when carrying out tasks. According to Tourism Awareness Group:
“There is an evaluation, for example, of things that need to be fixed and problems encountered in the field. In terms of reports, a report needs to be prepared every year.”
The management team of Way Kalam only sometimes supervises waterfall tourism. When there are a lot of visitors on holidays, supervision is carried out by all members, while on normal days, supervision is carried out by only a few members. Members carries out operational supervision on tourist objects, starting from cleanliness around the waterfall because it is for the convenience of visitors who come. In addition, the members always remind visitors to be careful when crossing the stairs because they are slippery and also remind them not to litter.
At the controlling stage, the work of the Way Kalam Tourism Awareness Group is directly supervised by the Head of the Village Government. Apart from that, Tourism Awareness Group is also supervised by the Tourism Office and Way Pisang Forest Management Unit. Activities carried out by the Tourism Awareness Group related to development are required to be reported in advance. The village head must know all these activities and supervise them. There needs to be good communication between the Tourism Awareness Group and the Way Kalam Village Government to avoid misunderstandings. All activities that the Tourism Awareness Group are to carry out need to be reported regularly to the Head of Way Kalam Village at coordination meetings, so that the tasks can be well assigned to members of the Tourism Awareness Group for effectiveness and efficiency. According to the members of the Tourism Awareness Group:
“The division of tasks is carried out in advance. For example, I’m working in the security department, and our job is coordination and briefings. Some of us are assigned to Anakan, some here and some the parking lot.”
The division of tasks to members is carried out based on the existing organizational structure. Each member of the group is responsible for performing its own duties. However, if a member is absent when carrying out the task, another member will do it in lieu of in order to get maximum performance. Relevant stakeholders also monitor and evaluate whether there are deviations, deficiencies, and so on in what has been done. The monitoring results are then evaluated for further improvement. The evaluation is presented in the form of an annual report obtained from the results of the monthly reports through joint coordination with the tourism members. According to the Head of Destinations in the South Lampung Tourism Office:
“If there is no evaluation schedule, it will be like a kind of surprise inspection. We will get there when they have no knowledge. We also pretend to be visitors to see how they welcome us and whether it is appropriate or not. Several times we disguised ourselves, and the results were good. They had passion in serving people. If there were only 5 or 10 members who attended the training, those 5 or ten people would convey the training content to those who did not come.”
The Way Kalam Tourism Awareness Group has carried out management functions, that is POAC, as much as they can in the development of Way Kalam Waterfall tourism in Way Kalam Village. However, the performance is still not desired. The optimal performance of tourism requires motivation from the local government, who provides counseling and training. The tourist services are managed by the members of the Way Kalam Tourism Awareness Group, who are from the local community. These services increase their income and also make tourism sustainable. This group has made short-, medium- and long-term plans, jointly with relevant stakeholders. The roles of Way Kalam Tourism Awareness Group members in organizing are adjusted to fit their duties and responsibilities. For the Way Kalam Tourism Awareness Group, actuating is the implementation according to plans. The work done by the Way Kalam Tourism Awareness Group is directly supervised by the village government.
The data used to support the research findings are available from the corresponding author upon request.
The authors declare no conflict of interest.