Tsodilo, Botswana

Capacity Building for Guides in Community Based Tourism, Tsodilo, Botswana, April 18-21, 2006
On behalf of the Botswana National Museum

Target group: Cultural guides from Tsodilo, Majojo, Lekhubu Island, Old Palapye, Domboshaba, Matsieng, Manyana, Gcwihaba, Livingstone; 26 participants
Aim: To Provide basic knowledge in the fields of communication, archaeology and rock art, to improve the performance of the guides when in contact with tourists and to enhance their self-esteem and leading skills.
Contents and outcome (extract): The communication training focused on mobilizing personal resources, e.g. by exploring the USP (Unique Selling Proposition or “What makes me distinctive”). As a result all the participants discovered how to use their own individual speciality in their guided tours. A model of the ideal and typical guide and ideal tour was created. Practical exercises in small working groups, self-awareness and role-play activities, effectively supported the general process of strengthening self-esteem.
A demonstration of stone tool knapping helped to deepen the understanding of site formation processes and provoked stimulating questions by the trainees. Site-specific knowledge about rock art and archaeology has augmented the competence of the guides contributing to the satisfaction of the visitors and the protection of the sites.
Certification: Each participant took a written examination on rock art and archaeology and made a presentation of a mock guided tour. This formed the basis of the certification. The certificate was handed out by the director of the National Museum in a ceremony in the presence of official representatives of the Shakawe District authorities.
Follow-Up training for basic and advanced level is to take place in May 2007.

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(Translation from Heinrich-Barth-Kurier 2/2006, “What came first – the rock or the paintings?”)
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