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Andy Dumaine and the International Storytelling Center visit Comoros

In February, sustainable tourism expert Andy Dumaine and two storytellers from the International Storytelling Center traveled to the Comoros to address key stakeholders from the working group “Friends of Tourism”, comprised of members of the University of Comoros, private sector and NGOs.

Recognizing the need to include local communities in the planning of equitable business models, Andy founded Shrinkingfootprint, a consultancy firm dedicated towards fostering sustainability. Specifically, he seeks to close the gap between the haves and the have-nots, by making sure revenue from tourism stays in country.  

The International Information Program’s U.S. Speaker Program hosted Mr. Dumaine and International Storytelling Center, who held workshops on how Comorian’s could use storytelling to build a strong sustainable community tourism program. Comorians were exposed to the tools to not only capture and preserve the stories of Comoros but to how to better appreciate the history and heritage of their great nation.

Mr. Dumaine also held training workshops on how to expand the community tourism project to areas beyond Moroni and Grande Comore.  In preparation for the 10th anniversary of the University of Comoros, Mr. Dumaine assisted in the planning of a public event to showcase Comorian culture through storytelling, dance and music. With the tools and strategies learned from Mr. Dumaine, Friends of Tourism Association and the Comorian Storytellers Association are preparing the inaugural National Cultural Festival of Comoros.