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Cultural Restoration Tourism Project (CRTP) is a non-profit organization with the mission to help communities around the world restore artifacts of cultural importance, promote responsible tourism and provide a model of alternative funding for other non-profits.
CRTP is currently bringing volunteers to Nepal to help restore the Chairro Gompa, a centuries-old monastery which was once the religious center of the Takhali people of Mustang. When the Chinese government closed the border to Tibet, the villages along the trade route in the Mustang region met with economic hardship. The affluent salt traders of the region were forced to relocate in order to support themselves and their families. The region fell into poverty and disrepair. For many years the people of the area still came to Chairro to practice their religious traditions, but, the dwindling population found it difficult to support and maintain the Gompa. In the early seventies the last of the monks left Chairro and the fate of the Gompa was left to the elements.
The harsh weather of the area has taken its toll on the gompa structure and the treasures inside are at risk of being lost forever. Centuries-old wall paintings and sculptures dwell precariously in a structure on the verge of collapse. Without immediate attention these works of master artists and craftsmen will be erased from existence.
This Gompa is very important to the people of the Chairro region. The efforts of volunteers that come to Nepal to help with this project mean so much to the local community.
- Mark Hintzke
- (415) 563-7221
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