Colombia has played an active role in safeguarding living heritage since its ratification of the Convention in 2008. Communities based in the Orinoco region have expressed an increasing interest in the capacity building programme of the 2003 Convention, especially since the inscription of the Colombian-Venezuelan Llano Work Songs on the Urgent Safeguarding List in 2017. With communities in the lead, the ‘My Heritage, My Region: Strategy for Capacity-building in Social Management’ pilot safeguarding project was operationalized in 2019 with support from the International Assistance mechanism, through UNESCO’s Intangible Cultural Heritage Fund.
The project aimed to build local capacities for the social management of living heritage in the Orinoco region – specifically in the Casanare and Arauca departments – to ensure that social and institutional actors can autonomously create strategies to safeguard their living heritage.
With the specificities of the territories in mind, the project focused on developing a participatory methodology, pilot inventories of local ICH, and specific safeguarding initiatives such as workshops and fieldwork. Main achievements include the design of key awareness-raising safeguarding plans and strengthened project-management capacities. A website platform specifically designed for this project has brought people from different backgrounds together under an efficient information-sharing process while promoting long-lasting awareness on the diverse ICH of the Llano region.
The success of this community-lead project demonstrates Colombia’s and UNESCO’s commitment to ICH safeguarding, supported by the International Assistance mechanism.
Read more about the project: ‘My Heritage, My Region: Strategy for Capacity-building in Social Management’
Learn more about the International Assistance mechanism.