News from the Republic of Djibouti: the results of the project funded by the Intangible Cultural Heritage Fund

Young women dancing the dabbal and singing the Malabo, Djibouti
Young women dancing the dabbal and singing the Malabo, Djibouti
© Amin Abdi Atteyeh

The Republic of Djibouti has finalized its first national inventory of intangible cultural heritage elements with support from the Intangible Cultural Heritage Fund. This effort is part of a series of awareness-raising workshops on the 2003 UNESCO Convention for the Safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage organized from 2018 by the Ministry of Muslim Affairs, Culture and Waqfs.

The project has significantly strengthened the capacity of Afar, Arab, and Somali communities in the implementation of the 2003 Convention. More than 40 participants were able to familiarize themselves with its principles and mechanisms. Thus, representatives of communities, holders of intangible heritage, members of civil society, researchers and government officials have benefited from training, strengthening collaboration between the various cultural actors in the country. These trainings focused on the establishment of inventories, the elaboration of national plans for the safeguarding of heritage, nomination files and requests for international assistance. The project culminated in the collaborative production of the first national inventory with the active participation of communities, which now includes nine intangible heritage elements.

The Djibouti authorities have also demonstrated their commitment to the project of setting up a National Committee in charge of intangible cultural heritage in order to continue the momentum for the safeguarding of Djibouti’s living heritage.

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