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Chairpersons Introduction

Ireland since 2003.  

New Chairperson John Toland accepting the tenure from Eva  Scheifer

New Chairperson John Toland accepting the tenure from Eva Scheifer

My name is John Toland and I have been Chairperson of Rural Tourism International Training Network (RTI-TN) since September 2007.  I am employed by Cavan Monaghan Rural Development (CMRD) as a Tourism Development Officer and we have been active members of RTI in


RTI-TN is an association for individual trainers, organisations and institutes dealing with rural tourism training. This permanent European network of trainers has been established for the joint development of training material and the exchange of experience. We have also developed material which is being successfully delivered by a number of organisations throughout the EU.


Within my organisation in Ireland, I utilised the training material and skills acquired from participating in RTI-TN ‘train the trainer’ programmes by adapting the training material to meet the needs of the rural community in my area (Border counties of Ireland and Northern Ireland).  We particularly focused on the training theme; ‘Rural Tourism Marketing & Promotion’ at three different levels including orientation, basic and advanced.  These courses were funded through ‘Border Action’ and I was supported in organising these courses with assistance from my colleague Grainne Curran.


As a result of using established rural tourism entrepreneurs whom were accredited ‘trainers’, the course participants (farm families & communities) gained a better insight in to the realities of developing and managing a rural tourism business.  During each course, we always invited other rural tourism businesses to come in to speak to the participants during the courses which helped to bring a greater sense of realism to the participants. 


I am looking forward to the challenges that 2009 brings in the current economic climate and I am also excited about the opportunities that are ahead for RTITN through various projects that we are now working on.  We are always interested in attracting new members with the aim of improving the delivery of Rural Tourism Trainer for the benefit of rural communities / farms who wish to develop through tourism.


If you want to know more about my work in Ireland please visit my blog dedicated to my work in Ireland  

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