In simple numbers, MTB Ayiti 2013 was:
● 26 athletes- 13 foreigners representing 6 countries, 13 Haitian racers; 20 men, 6 women
● 105km of biking, with more than 3,200 meters of climbing
● 100+ total participants (staff, crew, drivers, porters, security, film, etc)
● $160,000 total budget, with $130,000 (82%) spent in Haiti or through Haiti-related companies
● 28 Sponsor companies and 24 Partner organizations
● 33 positive stories (and counting) in global media outlets ranging from National Geographic to The Miami Herald to adventure travel magazines on 3 continents.
The long term goal of the Mountain Bike Ayiti Project is to establish a sustainable adventure tourism industry in Haiti, operated and serviced by local Haitian micro-enterprise businesses in partnership with the international adventure and ecotourism industry. By design, these pioneer adventure tourists will be ‘discovering’ Haiti’s historical and cultural sites (such as the San Souci Palace, the Citadel, etc.) many of which are virtually unknown outside of Haiti, and starkly contrast with the scenes of destruction that most foreigners have indelibly etched in their minds.
Word-of-mouth marketing will quickly go viral, and the success of this effort will both enable and encourage further investment in attractions, accommodations, and services, which will open Haiti to non-adventure tourism. This will expand and strengthen Haiti’s physical and business infrastructure outside of the capital, and create economic growth in the smaller towns and villages.
While initially focused on mountain bike adventures, the blueprint will be easily replicable in other regions and other sports including paddling, wind surfing, kite surfing, snorkeling & diving, hiking, rock climbing, and a myriad of ecotourism activities. All of these are inter-related, and will build up a dense ecosystem of adventure activities that will help establish Haiti as a compelling destination spot, especially for North American volunteer-oriented travelers. The second annual MTB Ayiti Stage Race will be in Jan 2014.
Learn more and GET INVOLVED at http://mtbayiti.org