As an active member and volunteer of a Russian environmental NGO Great Baikal Trail, I have been involved into various activities throughout last three years.
Located in the Siberian Federal District, Baikal Lake is the deepest freshwater lake in the world. With over 1550 animal species and 1085 different plants it represents a unique lab and hub for eco-travellers.
GBT in its turn promotes both ecological and volunteer tourism in this region. Through trail-building and educational projects it enables travellers not only to see the beauty of the lake but also to interact with the local landscape and people (both local residents and employees of Nature State Reserves). It also runs programmes on nature conservation and interpretation. The ultimate goal is to provide a circular system of trails around the entire lake.
Two-week trail-building projects are mainly organised in summer as they imply tent camps and sleeping bag armies.
As an official translator at one of such projects I ensured the communication between 15 international participants. Although participants were from various countries such as Russia, England, Germany, France, and Switzerland, our working language was English. Along with attempts to bring our Babel village to mutual understanding, I also took care of cultural and entertainment programmes. Together with our Camp Leader we held team-building games and reflection sessions.
Our organisation has also gained additional visibility in Germany. A partner organisation in-situ is a Würzburg-based association Naturfreunde e.V. that equally receives donations to support the infrastructure around Baikal Lake. If you need more information in the German language, please check their website here. Before that let yourself be inspired by our footage from the field.
Furthermore, if you represent an environmental organisation with a similar organisational structure, GBT would like to hear from you. Topics of particular interest are various modes of financing in the third sector and possible partnerships. Besides, feel free to connect here over the UNWTO-initiated platform for active players in the sustainable tourism worldwide.
© 2018 Elena Bubeeva, All Rights Reserved