04 Oct Social Tourism
What is Social Tourism?
I don’t know where I first heard the term Social Tourism. But I immediately “got it”. I see the power of synergy. So often when you put things together you find they work better. Put lonely old folks together with childcare you have happy, well adjusted kids and joyful seniors. Your put composting worms together with kitchen garbage and you have rich compost and products to sell rather than greenhouse gases and pollution. Countless things are improved when we combine our needs and issues into creative solutions.
Combining Travel with Social need ( ergo Social Tourism) is like that.
People love to travel. travel opens up our minds and understanding. Our eyes see the need of people and the planet, when we travel and have experiences outside our walls of comfort. Travelers are often people of good will with a great desire to help change the world for the better. With the billions that are spent on tourism and all that economic force going into good work its easy to see how an idea of Tourism with a purpose can bring about great good.
So with that let me introduce to you some really good ideas.
Quick note: I moved my family to Costa Rica in 2006. 5 kids and my wife, two labs, a cat and a chihuahua. I home school my kids but one son is deaf so I put him a public school for the Deaf near the capital of San Jose. Costa rican Sign language is similar to American Sign languages with a few minor differences. As the founder of a non profit school and an adventure hostel directed at Social Tourism my mind immediately saw the needs of the Deaf, not just in Costa Rica, but the world!
75% of the Deaf in Costa rica have no employment or the hope for any meaningful work, so there is need number one right? When I did some research on Deaf Travel I saw, to be frank, not a whole lot. Deaf travel was mostly about Cruises etc, which are good I guess, Deaf people just love to get together and talk, have fun. But after going through pages and pages of Google searches that just kept showing the same boring travel destinations I had to ask myself “Are Deaf people desirous of opportunities for deep social contact, experiences and service such as are offered by Peace Trail International?” I think so.
So we have developed two really amazing Tours both with the potential to change all of our lives. Both of the Tours direct time, money, and training to create jobs for the deaf while having an amazing cultural experience, education, and exposure to the most amazing Nature on planet Earth; the Rainforests of Costa Rica.
Both tours are minimalist, and ultra sustainable. Lodging is in our traveler’s hostel in Golfito, meals taken together in the Hostel kitchen, tours to the outback, boating, beaches, jungle, wildlife, boating, camping and little local nightlife. The guides will speak; English, Spanish , ASL and Lesco.(Costa rican sign language)
To that we add two sponsorships; One sponsorship goes to building a boat and training a Deaf person to become a Deaf tour boat guide. The other sponsorship goes to buying a mobile Doughnut making machine and setting up a Deaf Person in Business.
Our first offering of these two tours will be focused on the Deaf Tourist from the USA as Sponsors to the Deaf trainees in Costa Rica , but anyone can be a sponsor, Deaf or Hearing. Why not put a group together yourself? ( and get a huge discount on your own travel while you are at it!)