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Clark management, DOT train Aeta settlers as tour guides

Tuesday, June 16, 2009 [ ]

CLARK FREEPORT: The Clark Develop­ment Corp. (CDC) and the Department of Tourism (DOT) on June 15 launched the “Specialized Tour Guiding Seminar” where 20 Aeta settlers from the Sacobia Valley will be trained as tour guides of this Freeport.

CDC President Benigno Ricafort said the specialized tour-guiding seminar is part of the state-firm’s parallel development program on tourism for the Freeport and the Clark Special Economic Zone (CSEZ), located at the Sacobia Valley or the Next Frontier.

“The CDC has embarked on an aggressive tourism campaign through various projects that will place Clark on the tourism map and position itself as a value-for-money tourist destination,” Ricafort said.

Under the tour-guiding program, the CDC aims to assist in providing employment for young Aetas living in neighboring communities by working as tour guides of the Clark Museum.

Ricafort said the CDC has collaborated with the Office of Tourism Standards and the agency’s regional office, headed by Director Ronaldo Tiotuico for the training, which runs from June 15 to 19 at the Clark Museum here.

The seminar will be conducted by local and Manila-based experts in the field of tourism, arts and culture, and museum operations: Tourism department’s training officer Donald Balanhi will discuss the seminar mechanics and expectations and “Child Wise Tourism.” Tiotuico will deliver an overview of the tourism industry and current issues.

Haribon Foundation Chief Executive Officer Blas Tarabanza will talk on “Promoting Environmental Protection and Conservation with Ecotourism Concepts” while Clark Polytechnic Chief Executive Director Jose Vladimir Sampang will lecture on “Work Values Formation.”

Lord Francis Musngi, consultant of the Center for Kapampangan Studies of Holy Angel University, will delve on the “History of Pampanga and Clark” while his colleague Erlinda Cruz will lecture on the “Qualities of a Museum Guide.”

Clark Museum Curator Ceferina Yepez will deliver an overview of the Clark Museum while other topics like “Duties and Responsibilities of a Tourist Receptionist,“ Preparing and Conducting Tour Commentaries,” and other tour guiding techniques will be given by Prof. Dolores Salamanca of the College of Hospitality and Tourism Management.

The speaker for the last two days of the training is Tourism department’s Julius Judalena who will discuss “Effective Customer Service” and “Effective Communications Skills.”

The latter part of the seminar will also be used for the technical tour and mock tour, Ricafort said, adding that a panel will rate the tour-guiding exercise.--Mark Louie Roxas


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