AFRICA 2009 - Special seminar: Challenges of heritage and poverty alleviation
Dates : 2 – 6 March 2009
Place : São Tomé, São Tomé and Principe
Africa 2009 is a ten-year capacity building programme launched in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, in 1998. It is the result of a survey and needs assessment carried out in 1996. The programme is a joint effort of African cultural heritage organizations, EPA, CHDA, the UNESCO World Heritage Centre, ICCROM, and CRATerre-ENSAG. It is rooted in the notion that the problems facing conservation in Africa must be addressed not only through technical solutions, but also through a better understanding of the relationship between the immovable cultural heritage and its social-economic and environmental aspects. The programme which, closes at the end of 2009, has during its various phases continuously contributed to the improvement of national capacities in the management and conservation of immovable cultural heritage in sub Saharan Africa. Africa 2009 is supported by following sources: Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) through the Swedish National Heritage Board, the Ministry Foreign Affairs of Norway, Italy, Finland, UNESCO World Heritage Committee and ICCROM.
A study of national economic policies of various African countries has shown that most African development policy makers generally view cultural heritage as a barrier to poverty eradication and economic development and as a result, most African development policies do not mention culture or only mention culture in a negative way. Heritage practitioners on the other hand, argue that cultural heritage can directly contribute to poverty eradication by acting as a resource that cultural practitioners and local communities can use to generate income, create employment for themselves and others, and ultimately improve living conditions.
This seminar seeks to show how preserving and promoting cultural heritage is fundamental to the eradication of extreme poverty in Africa and how local communities in these countries can harness cultural heritage to stimulate sustainable economic growth and, thus, help meet some of their country’s Millennium Development Goals. This exchange forum will also identify mechanisms and possible partnerships for a better use of heritage as a development tool.
The seminar programme will allow for the sharing of information, experiences and ideas on how preserving and promoting cultural heritage is fundamental to the eradication of extreme poverty, safeguarding of human rights and sustainable development by examining the relationship between heritage and:
- access to shelter;
- use of knowledge and know how;
- reinforcing identity, dignity and respect for oneself and others
- way forward.
The first part of the seminar will be dedicated to presentations (case studies, reflections) by seminar participants on above the themes. These presentations will then be followed by a plenary session, group work and discussion to identify and propose possible solutions and strategies for the formulation of policies that will integrate culture into economic and human development for poverty eradication. A visit will be made to a heritage site in São Tomé.
The course takes place in English/French with simultaneous translation.
Fifteen to eighteen heritage professionals from sub Saharan Africa will be selected for the seminar
Applications from qualified women are encouraged.
The Africa 2009 programme will offer successful candidates sponsorship to cover travel, accommodation and modest living expenses in São Tomé. However each participant is required to pay a registration fee of $25 (US dollars). Payment can be provided during the seminar.
Applicants should submit:
- Duly completed application forms: including a letter of endorsement from the national Director in charge of immovable cultural heritage in the applicant’s country;
- A summary of the key points of the applicant’s proposed presentation.
The completed application documentation must sent to the following addresses:
Africa 2009 Special Regional Seminar on Heritage and Poverty alleviation
Ecole du Patrimoine Africain (EPA)
B.P. 2205, Rue de l’Inspection
Porto Novo, Bénin
Tel. +229 214838
Fax: +229 212109
Email: africa2009 (at) epa-prema . net
with copies to africa2009 (at) iccrom . org
Please send copies of all the documentation to the two email addresses.
Applications should be sent to the addresses above by 15 January 2009