2011.10.20 message from Mikey Leung, Author of ‘Bangladesh: The Bradt Travel Guide’
I hope you are all well where ever you may be and your work/personal projects are going well.
I wanted to let you know that I’m finally back in Bangladesh for the next six weeks. I’ve been in touch with all of you at various points regarding the update of the Bradt guide, but to be honest I haven’t managed to find enough personal time to keep everything and everyone coordinated. My sincere apologies for talking big and not following through.
The good news: I’m now back again giving Bangladesh my full and almost undivided attention. We’ve got a deadline to make (Jan 15), and a lot of work to do. And I cannot do it alone.
After many years of pondering the poverty problem, I’ve concluded that tourism is one of the best vehicles for developing new economic opportunities for Bangladesh. Tourism could provide massive economic opportunities for this country and I will no longer wait for the government or the tourism industry to reach the foreign audience. I’m taking matters into my own hands – and I am asking others to help me achieve this by volunteering (that’s you) or by seeding this business via the social business crowdfunding platform Start Some Good . Here is how to donate to Crowdsourced Travel .
Using social media and my video camera, I’m going to start shouting from the rice paddies that Bangladesh is now open to adventurous, socially-aware travellers. Bangladeshi people deserve to participate in tourism, a significant vehicle of economic empowerment, and I’ve now devoted several years of my life to sharing this important story with the world.
The purpose of my trip back is to achieve the following:
1. Consolidate a team of volunteers and tour operators who can help update the Bradt guide for a 15 Jan deadline and source new photographs for the guide.
2. Launch a crowdfunding campaign that will help start Crowdsourced Travel, a new social tourism venture. Begin creating its first products.
3. Tell the story of the country’s best social tourism operators and their products.
How can you help me?
1. Join Us: Stay informed by ‘liking’ our Facebook page or signing up on the newsletter .
2. Write: Publish your travel intelligence to the Wikitravel guide to Bangladesh or on Tripadvisor , sites that we plan to use as the info repositories for the travel community instead. If you have an iPhone or an Android phone you can publish directly to Wikitravel using the iTravelFree app. Those who take up larger roles in the project might get a free tour with an operator for research purposes!
3. Photograph: We need your best travel photography for the Bradt guide and for “Positive Light,” a new coffee table photography book I will publish if venture funding is successful. More news coming on this soon. Launch and exhibition event happening 27 October at the BAGHA club in Dhaka.
4. Spread the word: Forward this message!! Let your friends and contacts know that you are thinking of contributing to Bangladesh: The Bradt Travel Guide and Crowdsourced Travel, and that we are raising money to start a social tourism business. They can join us at Facebook or sign up for the newsletter at the Crowdsourced Travel website. We will be launching the crowdfunding campaign next week.
5. Come to the launch event: On 27 October, I am holding a photo exhibition at the BAGHA Club in Dhaka to launch this event, and if you can join us in celebrating the best of Bangladesh I would love to meet you or see you again.
Thank you for expressing your interest in this project. I’d be honoured if you continue to support this work in any way you can. You can reach me in Bangladesh at 01721 720 530.