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Native Pathways to Education
Alaska Native Cultural Resources
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Athabascan RavenTribal Tourism Development:
A Handbook for Planners

SUPPORTING COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT
PART 2

The whole community should be involved in creating guidelines for tourism development.

Tourism can impact the whole community; therefore the whole community should have the opportunity to provide their input on tourism issues.

There are many different ways to get input and involvement in community issues. This section will give you specific strategies and ideas for initiating and supporting community guided tourism development.

A. STRATEGIES FOR INVOLVING THE WHOLE COMMUNITY
B. WORKSHOPS
SAMPLE WORKSHOP AGENDAS
C. CONDUCTING SURVEYS
D. FOLLOW-UP
E. IDENTIFY YOUR CORE GROUP


A. Strategies for involving the whole community
PART 2

EDUCATE YOURSELF

The person that is making an effort to develop tourism with and within the community should know a little bit about the subject before recruiting “team members”. Here are a few starters:

  1. Visitor statistics: How many local and statewide tourists are there?
  2. What are the region's attractions?
  3. Local resources: Is there a visitor's center, state park, National Park, or Chamber of Commerce nearby? Make a list of local and statewide resources.
  4. Attend tourism conferences or other related public meetings. Invite Tribal council members to attend conferences with you.
MAKE A LIST Make a list of community members and their contact information. You can also print mailing labels for each member, which will make it easy for you to send frequent mail-outs to the community.

everyone

EVERYONE IS DIFFERENT AND WILL BE INVOLVED IN THE TOURISM DEVELOPMENT PROCESS IN DIFFERENT WAYS.

ELDERS

Elders contain the bulk of traditional knowledge and should be consulted early in the process about any plans to promote tourism in the community. It is especially important to ask for input concerning what parts of the culture to share and not share and what lands are open to visitors as well as which lands to keep “closed”.

Prepare a list of specific questions that you want answered and go visiting. You can often get more information from an Elder in his or her own home (over a cup of tea) then you would at a community workshop. Be sure to invite the Elder to the tourism workshop in case they would like to attend.

TRIBAL LEADERS Tribal leaders are the link between traditional Indigenous knowledge and the American culture. Generally, it will be the tribal leaders who guide the tourism development process. Communicate with your tribal leaders. Invite them to every workshop and any other tourism and/or community development meeting. Send them regular emails or written reports to make it easy for them to stay informed.
BUSINESS OWNERS All of the business owners in the community play a role in community development. The business owner should be invited to every tourism workshop even if the business is not specifically related to tourism. Their involvement helps create good relations between business owners. They may also have important business knowledge to pass on to the future business owners.
YOUTH Send workshop invitations to the youth in the community. Youth participation adds energy and fresh ideas to community workshops.
Sometimes all you have to do is ask. Young people can be a great help in organizing community events. Chistochina youth became involved in an Earth Day event.
Earth Day
Courtesy of Chantelle Pence
We involved youth by inviting a young tribal member to help coordinate the first ecotourism workshop. Their participation was very helpful to the program coordinator and the exposure was good for the youth member.
EVERYONE ELSE Always send workshop invitations to everyone in the community. Use a variety of methods to get the word out. Post workshop notices in conspicuous places and advertise in the local paper.


B. Workshops
PART 2

Workshops are a good platform in which to organize ideas, discuss solutions and educate community members.

 

TIPS FOR COORDINATING AN EFFECTIVE WORKSHOP:

GET THE WORD OUT Use a variety of methods for notifying the public. Keep in mind that everyone will respond to different types of invitations. Make flyers to post in conspicuous places, make personal phone calls, mail out personal letters and send emails.
OFFER INCENTIVES Check with your local college or university to see if college credit can be received for attending the workshop. Be sure to let the public know if they can get college credit if they attend. Door prizes are always fun. Have a drawing for books on ecotourism (see the resource section for a list of books) or other tourism-related services.
BE PREPARED

Make a checklist of items needed for the workshop. Your list may include poster paper and easel, markers, pens and notepads for participants and copies of handouts.

Make a resource binder for each of the participants that includes local and statewide resources and specific tourism or business development information.

Section End
HONOR THE PARTICIPANTS

Treat the workshop participants well! Their participation and input is vital to sustainable community development.

Idea:
Prepare flower kits for each participant. You will need a pack of flower seeds, a zip-lock bag full of potting soil and a seed starter tray. Put a note in with the flower kit that says “A community is like a flower, it takes time and care to develop into something beautiful.”

 

SERVE GOOD FOOD

Good food makes the gathering! It honors the participants and gives everyone a chance to talk in a relaxed environment.

Idea:
Serve traditional foods or make an organic meal.

 

FOLLOW-UP This step is often overlooked. ALWAYS connect with the participants and community after the workshop. Mail a summary of what was discussed, ideas that people had, answers to questions and what participants can look forward to in future workshops.


Section End




B. Workshops
PART 2

What Should You Talk About At The 1st Tourism Workshop?


speaker1.HOW DOES EVERYONE FEEL ABOUT COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT/TOURISM DEVELOPMENT?

This is extremely important! Sometimes people will be opposed to tourism or community development simply because they haven't had a chance to provide their input. Give everyone an opportunity to express his or her views. Listen and reiterate what has been discussed so the speaker knows they're heard. Clarify their point if needed.

2. DEFINE WHAT IS UNIQUE ABOUT YOUR COMMUNITY.

What makes your community special? Why do people like to live there? Why would tourists be interested in coming to your community?

3. IDENTIFY EXISTING BUSINESSES OR TOURISM RELATED BUSINESSES.

What services already exist in the community? Begin a list of services.

4. LET PEOPLE DREAM.

Are there people in the community who have plans to start their own tourism-related business? Brainstorm and write down ideas.

5. DISCUSS THE PROS AND CONS OF TOURISM DEVELOPMENT. HOW WILL TOURISM DEVELOPMENT IMPACT THE COMMUNITY?

Again, let people express themselves. Record each speaker's ideas.

Local businesses should not view each other as competition.

6. ENCOURAGE NETWORKING BETWEEN BUSINESSES.

This is one of the most important steps to take. Good relations between local businesses are vital to sustainable community development. Discuss ways that local businesses can develop good relationships. Explain that in order to make your community a place that visitors want to come to, each business plays a role in providing a positive visitor experience.

7. GET IDEAS FOR FUTURE WORKSHOPS OR COMMUNITY MEETINGS.

Now that you have a core group of people thinking and talking about community development, keep it going. Brainstorm a list of items that people want to learn more about and/or skills they want to acquire.

Workshops are an effective way to provide information to the community.

FOLLOWING IS A LIST OF TOPICS THAT COULD BE ADDRESSED IN A TOURISM WORKSHOP:

5 Insurance for business owners

5 Working with National Parks and other federal agencies

5 Road and trespass issues

5 Financial skills

5 Writing a business plan

5 Designing a web page

5 Communication skills

5 Customer service

5 Management skills and employee training

5 Accounting and taxes

5 Developing a business association

5 Working with local and statewide tourism agencies

Computer Help

Computer & Telephone

Airplane

 


THE NEXT FEW PAGES INCLUDE EXAMPLES OF WORKSHOP AGENDAS.


B. Workshops: Example
PART 2

Kelt'aeniPO Box 357 • Gakona Alaska 99586 • (907) 822-5399 • Fax (907) 822-5810

ECO-TOURISM/COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT WORKSHOP
MARCH 1, 02
CHISTOCHINA COMMUNITY HALL

Agenda

8:30am-9:00am Registration
9:00am-9:30am Introductions, Ice Breaker and Brainstorming
9:30am-10:30am What is eco-tourism? (Suzanne McCarthy, PWSCC)
-Preserving Community Culture
-Networking With Others
10:30am-11:30am Tourism Planning Process (Kristin Smith, CRWP)
-Identifying Market
-Seeking Common Ground
11:30am-12:30pm Local Resources (Tammy Jindra, CVEDC)
-Overview of Copper Valley Economic Development Council,
RDC Program, and SEARCH Conference
12:30pm-1:30pm Lunch and Evaluation Session

THANK YOU FOR ATTENDING THIS WORKSHOP!

 

Kelt'aeniPO Box 357 • Gakona Alaska 99586 • (907) 822-5399 • Fax (907) 822-5810

ECO-TOURISM WORKSHOP
APRIL 19, 02
CHISTOCHINA COMMUNITY HALL

Agenda

8:30am-9:00am Registration and Sign In
9:00am-9:30am Introductions and Progress Repor t
9:30am-10:15am Insurance (Suzanne McCarthy, PWSCC)
-Do you need insurance?
-Costs of insurance
10:15am-11:00am Operating a business within the Park
(Hunter Sharp, Wrangell St. Elias National Park)
--Opportunities
-Rules, Regulations, and Permits
11:00am-11:15am BREAK!!!
11:15am-12:00pm Operating a business on Ahtna Lands
(Joe Hicks-Cheesh'Na Tribal Council)
-Opportunities
-Rules, regulations, and Permits
12:00pm-1:00pm Lunch (will be provided)
1:00pm-4:00pm Writing a business plan (Ruth St. Amour, Division of
Community and Economic Development)
-Evaluating your business concept, break even analysis, and writing
a business plan

 

 

B. Workshops: Example
PART 2

Kelt'aeniPO Box 357 • Gakona Alaska 99586 • (907) 822-5399 • Fax (907) 822-5810

 

 

 

Happy New Year!
The 2003 tourists are busy with vacation plans. What role will you play in their visit to Alaska? Directly or indirectly, we are all a part of the tourism scene. A tourism workshop is being held at the Chistochina Bed and Breakfast on January 28 and YOU ARE INVITED! Your presence at this workshop is greatly appreciated. Following is an agenda:

Tourism Workshop, January 28, 03 11:00am-2:30pm

11:00am-11:30am Brunch and Introductions
11:30am-12:00pm What does Chistochina have to offer the 2003 tourists?
-new businesses/services
-visitor information
12:00pm-12: 45pm Cultural Tourism/Cultural Interpretation
(Vikki Rood, Wrangell St. Elias National Park and Preserve)
-Overview of cultural tourism (trends and market)
-Cultural Interpretation (examples and opportunity)
12:45pm-1:00pm BREAK!
1:00pm-1:30pm Local Business Support and Advertising Opportunities
(Liz Rice, Greater Copper Valley Chamber of Commerce)
1:30pm-2:00pm Chistochina Visitors Guide
-Local Input (Bring Pictures!)
2:00pm-2:30pm Where do we go from here?
-Business Networking
-Creating a business association

 

Eco-TourismECO-TOURISM
INTERACTIVE WORKSHOP
July 30, 2002 9:30am-1:00pm
Mentasta Community Hall

 

5 LEARN ABOUT TOURISM IN ALASKA……..
5 DISCUSS HOW TOURISM AFFECTS YOUR COMMUNITY…..
5 EXPLORE BUSINESS OPTIONS……….
5 EXPERIENCE ECO-TOURISM AT ITS BEST WITH A GUIDED
5 CANOE TRIP BY HUCK HOBBIT TOURS!

 

9:30am-10:00am Introductions and Brainstorming
10:00am-11:00am Tourism trends and potential
11:00am-12:30pm Eco-tourism
-what is eco-tourism
-preserving community culture
-marketing your eco-tourism business
12:30pm-1:00pm Lunch (will be provided)
1:00PM DEPART FOR CANOE TRIP

 


Going door to door is often the best method for obtaining accurate information. Be sure to include a stamped and addressed return envelope if you mail out the survey.

C. Surveys
PART 2

Surveys are another way to get input from the community. If you experience a low turnout at workshops, surveys may be the most effective way to gauge community interest in tourism development.

Below and on the following page are survey examples.


Mentasta Tourism Survey

How do you feel about tourists in general? (Check all that apply)

I like tourists.
They help Alaska's economy. I'm glad they come to visit.
They help Alaska's economy, but I think they're a pain in the…
I don't like tourists
Other Comments_______________________________________________________

How do you feel about tourists coming to Mentasta?

I would welcome them to Mentasta.
I welcome them, but they need to know where they can and can't go.
They bring money to the area, local people could benefit.
I don't want tourists coming to Mentasta.
Other Comments_______________________________________________________

Have you ever thought about starting a tourism-related business?

Yes No
What Kind? ________________________________

Would you like to learn more about ecotourism?

Yes No

Name and Phone (optional)_____________________________________________________

Thank You For Taking The Time To Complete This Survey.
Look for survey results in the next MSTC Newsletter.

 

Personalized letters are a nice touch.

Dear Lee and Ramona,

The2003 Bear Foot Companion travel guide has an ad space reserved for Mentasta, courtesy of the MSTC ecotourism program. The travelers guide is distributed across Alaska and will be an effective way for Mentasta to communicate with visitors (tourists, hunters, etc). We Want Your Input! Please fill out the survey below and on the back of this page and tell us your thoughts about what should be included in the ad. When you have completed the survey, please mail (or hand deliver) to Charles at the Mentasta Tribal Office. Thank You.

****************************************************************

THERE IS NO WRONG ANSWER FOR THIS SURVEY. WE WANT YOUR HONEST THOUGHTS AND OPINIONS. FEEL FREE TO USE ADDITIONAL PAGES IF NECESSARY.

1) Do you have a business that you would like to advertise? Yes No
If yes, what type of business ____________________________________________

2) Should visitors be encouraged to go to Mentasta? Yes No ____________

3)Should visitors feel welcome to go to Mentasta? Yes No ______________

4) Do you think that visitors should have an understanding of the community “rules”
before coming to the Village? If you were to write a Do's and Don't list what would it say?
When Visiting Mentasta….
Do ____________________________________________________________________
_____________________________________________________________________
Please Don't _________________________________________________________
________________________________________________________________
5) Do you think that history and/or culture should be shared in the ad? Yes No
6)Do you have any good pictures that may work well for the ad? Yes No
Other Comments ____________________________________________________________



D. Follow-Up
PART 2

It is important to make contact with the community after the workshop or survey. Let everyone know how important his or her input is. Following is an example of a follow-up letter to workshop participants.

Dear Tourism Enthusiast!

Many thanks for your participation and input in the Eco-tourism workshop that was held yesterday. Your contribution is invaluable!

Doyle and Norma: Thanks so much for your generous hospitality. Your home is beautiful visitors really get the royal treatment.

Joe: I know you have a busy schedule and I appreciate you taking the time out for yet another tourism workshop. Your encouragement is very heartening as well.

Marilynn: you have a great business idea, I hope you stick with it. You have the ability to provide a great service to tourists.

Vikki: Your presentation on cultural tourism/interpretation was awesome (especially for such short notice). It gave me a lot to think about, and I wish we would have had more time to discuss it. I especially appreciate your obvious enthusiasm in your role with the Park Service, it's great to know people the people behind the title.

Barbara: Thanks for taking the time to come network with the locals! Good to see you come back soon!

Liz: What a breath of fresh air! You're definitely on the right track and a real asset to the Copper River Basin. I am going to get the word out about the map and the business friendly operations of the Chamber......

Ruth: I talked with the participants of the business workshops and heard some good things. When people dream about their business plans, they don't always think about the details of business operations. You presented a lot of food for thought.

A short summary of the eco-tourism work shop is included.

Sincerely,

signature

Chantelle Pence, EPA Coordinator


E. Identify Your Core Group

Who are the movers and shakers?

WHICH COMMUNITY MEMBERS ARE INTERESTED IN BEING PART OF CREATING SUSTAINABLE COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT?

Movers and ShakersIf you have made contact with the community through a meeting, workshop or survey and you have received feedback, you are ready to begin planning with a specific group of people.

While it would be nice if EVERYONE would get involved, we know this is not realistic. There will be a few people in your community that are, or will be, interested in sustainable community development. Your core group should consist of these people.

When scheduling the next phase of tourism and/or community development workshops, make sure that the people in the core group can attend. Choose a date and time that fits everyone's schedule.

5 Get personal with everyone in the group by sending them regular updates via emails, phone calls or email.

5 Make sure to get input from the core group when making decisions.

5 Offer the group gifts for being part of the team. Give each person a book about eco-tourism or sustainable community development.

 

Note: While it is important to focus on the core group of “movers and shakers", don't forget about the rest of the community. Continue to make contact with all members of the community through invitations and updates.

End Chapter

 

This material is based upon work supported by the Environmental Protection Agency Grant No. GA-97002201-1. Opinions or points of view expressed in this document are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official position of the Environmental Protection Agency.


TABLE OF CONTENTS

INTRODUCTION

UNDERSTANDING TOURISM
Part 1

  1. General Tourism Development
  2. Eco-Tourism
  3. Cultural Tourism and Cultural Interpretation
  4. Tourism With Integrity

SUPPORTING COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT
Part 2

  1. Strategies For Involving The Whole Community
  2. Workshops
    Sample Workshop Agendas
  3. Conducting Surveys
  4. Follow-up
  5. Identify Your Core Group

NUTS AND BOLTS OF TOURISM DEVELOPMENT
Part 3

  1. Identify Where Your Community Is In The Tourism Development Process
  2. What Do You Do If The Community Doesn't Want Tourism?
  3. Tourism Management
  4. Marketing
  5. Encouraging Good Relations Between Local Businesses
  6. Supporting Local Business Development
  7. Community Beautification

 
 

Go to University of AlaskaThe University of Alaska Fairbanks is an affirmative action/equal opportunity employer and educational institution and is a part of the University of Alaska system.

 


Alaska Native Knowledge Network
University of Alaska Fairbanks
PO Box 756730
Fairbanks  AK 99775-6730
Phone (907) 474.1902
Fax (907) 474.1957
Questions or comments?
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Last modified September 20, 2006