U.S. Non-Profit Helping Mongolia Rebuild Through Tourism

Oct 10, 2002, 01:00 ET from Cultural Restoration Tourism Project

    PACIFICA, Calif., Oct. 10 /PRNewswire/ -- Tourism is the largest industry
 in the world, yet it often has little economic impact on the host community.
 According to the World Tourism Organization, less than 10% of all tourist
 dollars stay in the communities in which the traveler visits. A U.S.-based
 non-profit called the Cultural Restoration Tourism Project (CRTP) is trying to
 change this fact with innovative programs.
     CRTP offers tours that direct money into local economies through
 culturally-based development projects.  "We believe that tourism should
 benefit locals, not exploit them," said Mark Hintzke, Managing Director of
 CRTP.
     A CRTP project that illustrates their commitment to changing tourism is
 the restoration of a Buddhist temple in Mongolia.  Every summer CRTP brings
 tourists from around the world to the site of the Baldan Baraivan monastery.
 The tourists get their hands dirty working alongside the locals who are
 restoring the main temple. The money that the tourists would normally pay a
 foreign tour company goes directly towards the restoration in the form of
 salaries and materials.
     The monastery at Baldan Baraivan was brutally destroyed in the 1930s by a
 hostile communist regime.  Now a democracy, Mongolia is embracing its Buddhist
 past and making efforts to restore these cultural treasures.  A lack of funds
 has hampered most of these efforts.  CRTP makes it possible for the people of
 this poor region to regain part of their history and tradition.
     While working at the site, participants live in the traditional felt tents
 of the Mongolian nomads, called "gers".  In their two weeks at the site they
 are able to help in several of the monastery's restoration projects.  By
 working with the locals the participants learn the history and customs of
 Mongolia.
     "What made this such a positive experience was how the project is
 affecting the Mongolians," writes Mark Collins, a participant from Canada.
 "Being able to provide a solid income for so many people is important for me."
     Since the project's inception in 1998 CRTP has gained recognition in many
 media outlets including: Forbes Magazine, Outside Magazine, Newsweek and Time
 Asia.
     In 2003, CRTP will run one and two-week tours to the Baldan Baraivan
 monastery.  The tours begin in mid-May and run through mid-September.  Please
 contact CRTP at: www.crtp.net or e-mail: crtp@earthlink.net for details.
 
     This release was issued through The Xpress Press News Service, a
 reasonably priced solution to reach reporters and media outlets using e-mail
 technology. For more information, visit http://www.XpressPress.com
 
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SOURCE Cultural Restoration Tourism Project
    PACIFICA, Calif., Oct. 10 /PRNewswire/ -- Tourism is the largest industry
 in the world, yet it often has little economic impact on the host community.
 According to the World Tourism Organization, less than 10% of all tourist
 dollars stay in the communities in which the traveler visits. A U.S.-based
 non-profit called the Cultural Restoration Tourism Project (CRTP) is trying to
 change this fact with innovative programs.
     CRTP offers tours that direct money into local economies through
 culturally-based development projects.  "We believe that tourism should
 benefit locals, not exploit them," said Mark Hintzke, Managing Director of
 CRTP.
     A CRTP project that illustrates their commitment to changing tourism is
 the restoration of a Buddhist temple in Mongolia.  Every summer CRTP brings
 tourists from around the world to the site of the Baldan Baraivan monastery.
 The tourists get their hands dirty working alongside the locals who are
 restoring the main temple. The money that the tourists would normally pay a
 foreign tour company goes directly towards the restoration in the form of
 salaries and materials.
     The monastery at Baldan Baraivan was brutally destroyed in the 1930s by a
 hostile communist regime.  Now a democracy, Mongolia is embracing its Buddhist
 past and making efforts to restore these cultural treasures.  A lack of funds
 has hampered most of these efforts.  CRTP makes it possible for the people of
 this poor region to regain part of their history and tradition.
     While working at the site, participants live in the traditional felt tents
 of the Mongolian nomads, called "gers".  In their two weeks at the site they
 are able to help in several of the monastery's restoration projects.  By
 working with the locals the participants learn the history and customs of
 Mongolia.
     "What made this such a positive experience was how the project is
 affecting the Mongolians," writes Mark Collins, a participant from Canada.
 "Being able to provide a solid income for so many people is important for me."
     Since the project's inception in 1998 CRTP has gained recognition in many
 media outlets including: Forbes Magazine, Outside Magazine, Newsweek and Time
 Asia.
     In 2003, CRTP will run one and two-week tours to the Baldan Baraivan
 monastery.  The tours begin in mid-May and run through mid-September.  Please
 contact CRTP at: www.crtp.net or e-mail: crtp@earthlink.net for details.
 
     This release was issued through The Xpress Press News Service, a
 reasonably priced solution to reach reporters and media outlets using e-mail
 technology. For more information, visit http://www.XpressPress.com
 
                      Make Your Opinion Count - Click Here
                http://tbutton.prnewswire.com/prn/11690X04235457
 
 SOURCE  Cultural Restoration Tourism Project