ICCROM, through its ICCROM-ATHAR Regional Office, is proud to announce receipt of a £997,000 project grant to conserve three community museums in Omdurman, El Obeid, and Nyala, located in Western Sudan.
This project will restore the three museums and provide for the educational and cultural needs of their communities, visitors and tourists.
The project “Community Museums of Western Sudan” is funded by the British Council's Cultural Protection Fund, in partnership with the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, United Kingdom.
Three museums on a historic route
The Khalifa House in Omdurman, the Sheikan Museum in El Obeid and the Darfur Museum in Nyala lie on a traditional trade route leading out of Western Sudan towards the capital, Khartoum. Each museum hosts collections that speak to the community and history of the local area, as well as being nationally and internationally significant. The Khalifa House holds the first car in Sudan, while the displays in the Darfur Museum were created through donations from the community.
Decades of conflict in Sudan have devastated communities, damaged heritage facilities and led to a loss of heritage skills. By revitalizing these three Sudanese community museums and providing training in heritage skills, this project will ensure the museums are protected and that their collections are valuable educational tools.
Training for local people to conserve three Sudanese museums and to protect the artefacts housed there
Using traditional methods, local craftsmen and trainees will restore the Khalifa House in Omdurman and the Mudeirah Gate in El Obeid. Infrastructure at all three museums will be improved to ensure the museums are fit for the collections and their communities. The training will involve development of a five-year conservation management plan for each museum, leading to better heritage management in the future.
On-the-job training in conservation, recording and cataloguing will lead to the protection of approximately 20,600 artefacts. Through the creation of new displays and a programme of workshops, educational and cultural events, communities will gain the tools and understanding to protect and engage with their cultural heritage.
ICCROM-ATHAR will carry out this restoration and community engagement project in collaboration with the following institutions and consultants:
- The National Corporation for Antiquities and Museums (NCAM), Sudan
- The Centre for Heritage Studies, McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research, University of Cambridge, United Kingdom
- Mallinson Architects and Engineers.
The British Council's £30m Cultural Protection Fund, in partnership with the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, is set up to protect cultural heritage at risk due to conflict in the Middle East and North Africa.
ICCROM is an intergovernmental organization dedicated to the preservation and promotion of cultural heritage worldwide. It works with 136 Member States to ensure the best tools, knowledge, skills and enabling environment to preserve cultural heritage in all its forms, for the benefit of all people.
ICCROM’s programmes are crafted to address world concerns for cultural heritage, while emphasizing diversity and inclusivity in our stakeholders and activities. Through its work, ICCROM contributes to the environmental, social and economic sustainability of communities. ICCROM envisions a world in which cultural heritage – its preservation, protection and celebration – is inextricably linked with notions of progress, inclusivity, wellbeing and stability.
ICCROM-ATHAR (Architectural and Archaeological Tangible Heritage in the Arab Region) is a regional conservation centre founded by ICCROM and the Government of the Emirate of Sharjah.
The ICCROM-ATHAR Regional Conservation Centre in Sharjah is dedicated to the protection of cultural heritage in the Arab region and to broadening access, appreciation and understanding of its rich history. Basing its philosophy, goals and activities on its wide knowledge and experience in the field of cultural heritage in the Arab region, ICCROM-ATHAR today is working to enhance the capacity of official heritage institutions to manage heritage sites, historic monuments and museum collections on a sustainable basis.
ICCROM-ATHAR operates under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Dr Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Member of the Supreme Council, Ruler of Sharjah.