Monday 17th May 2021 saw 10 students from the Regional Tour Guiding course in Stillorgan College of Further Education take part in an online webinar for National Biodiversity Week 2021. The focus of this webinar was on improving the visitor experience and awareness of biodiversity.
The participants learned about the 7 Principles of Leave No Trace and tips and techniques for sharing them with their guests on tours. Among the techniques learned, the participants learned the importance of encouraging travellers to take only photos and leave only footprints.
Tour Guides are well place to educate travellers on the Leave No Trace philosophy and inform them of correct waste disposal, how to minimise harm to farm animals and wildlife and to stress how fragile the local ecosystem and habitats are.
The Regional Tour Guiding course was developed in collaboration with Fáilte Ireland in 2018 to train tour guides for the greater Dublin region and surrounding counties. The tour guides are trained in on-site guiding, coach tours and walking tours. They are also versed in all aspects of Irish Natural Heritage and Culture which is broad and ranges from pre-history to present day cultural issues. Leave No Trace Ireland have delivered a one day Certified Awareness Course to the students for the last two years as a core element of the curriculum.
This year’s course was slightly different due to Covid-19 restrictions, and all classes and seminars were conducted online. Leave No Trace delivered an online interactive webinar led by Accredited Advanced Trainer Maire Shanahan.