Posts Tagged rural communities,

‘Train the Trainers’

RTITN is dedicated to developing training materials and programmes which are appropriate for trainers to deliver modules to rural communities, farm families and rural tourism entrepreneurs.  We strive to develop and deliver training which will enable the rural participants to develop and operate successful tourism enterprises.

As Chairperson of RTITN, I have been directly involved in two of the three ‘Train the Trainers’ programmes which we have delivered; firstly as a trainee  in Austria in May 2007 and as a trainer with Michèle Zufferey in Hungary in April 2008.  Both of these training programmes were delivered over five full days and included farm visits to tourism entrepreneurs in the region.  Emphasis is placed on the need to ensure that the trainer has an ability to relate to the needs of the rural participants and to keep them actively engaged in the training.  It is a challenge working with adults as trainees and it is also rewarding to receive comments back from participants whom have put the learning in to practise after returning home.

Trainers visit tourism farm in Kozard, Hungary

Trainers visit tourism farm in Kozard, Hungary

Personally, I enjoy working with the trainers, rural development activists, tourism enterprises, rural communities and all stakeholders in this sector.  Rural Tourism presents an opportunity for communities in rural areas to maintain their farm family and generate an income.  Our approach in delivering the train the trainer programmes is about putting the participants first and ensuring that they gain the knowledge/skills neccessary to acheive success.

As a result of the RTI-TN ‘train the trainers’ programmes we have quailified trainers accross Europe and internationally, whom have been active in delivering this training in their home countries.  This provides RTI-TN with an invaluable human resource, which will form the basis for the further development of our network and to benefit more rural communities everywhere.

RTITN Trainees at Eva Schiffer rural tourism farm in St. Nikolai, Austria

RTITN Trainees at Eva Schiffer rural tourism farm in St. Nikolai, Austria

In 2009, we are working toward gaining accreditation by national bodies and possibilly EU bodies for our training.  Coupled with this we hope to deliver further ‘train the trainers’ programmes.  If you were a participant on one of our ‘Train the Trainer’ programmes, we would like to hear from you.  This may be your opportunity to become active in the Network and we would like to know what you are doing now?

In 2008, we also delivered a training programme in Georgia and I hope to add a post about this course in the coming week.


Comments (1)

Board Member – Georg Gerharter

I have been on the board of Rural Tourism International Training Network since October 2007 and I would like to inform you about my role as a rural tourism / organic farmer from Austria.


Along with my wife and family we are mountain farmers in the Austrian province of Styria and run a farm holiday business (“Urlaub am Bauernhof”).  The whole family is involved in the business, my wife, Christine, our two children (13 and 14), my parents, one employee and of course me! When we took over the farm 12 years ago there were just a dozen guest beds. We have gradually built on that so that we now have 50 guest beds with an average occupancy of 170 nights per bed per year. In the course of time we have achieved a good base of regular customers.


We have two high seasons. In summer people come to enjoy the countryside and in winter for winter sports. Spring and autumn are a bit quieter but in autumn we get good business with ramblers who come for walking and the autumn colours. In spring a few people come to see the lovely alpine flowers.  We are proud of the way that offer tourism services to our guests and advocate that the environment is there to be enjoyed, but we must not destroy it!


On the farming side we have an organic dairy herd of 20 cattle and I am the Chairperson of an Organic Farmers Association which has 600 members.  We do our best to show country life as it really is, without any pretence. I think people usually come back again because they appreciate the honest down to earth atmosphere of the countryside.


I am enthusiastic about my role a Board member of Rural Tourism International Training Network and I believe that I bring a sense of the needs of the farming community to the Board.  I believe that RTITN can help to coordinate and develop rural tourism training initiatives which can be implemented in rural communities throughout Europe and beyond.  I am looking forward to making new contacts and working with farmers and trainers who want to acquire skills in the area of rural tourism in 2009.


A good informative website is essential to market rural tourism in today’s world of fast communications and you can find out everything about us on



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