28 October 2016

Four new International Assistance requests were approved by the Bureau of the Committee on 20 October 2016 to support safeguarding efforts in Botswana, Kenya, El Salvador and Seychelles.
This was the first meeting of the Bureau of the Committee to approve International Assistance requests up to US$100,000, following the raise of the ceiling from US$25,000 during at the 6th General Assembly of State Parties to the Convention earlier this year, with two projects in Botswana and Seychelles approved. Botswana has chosen to use the Intangible Cultural Heritage Fund to support the implementation of the safeguarding plan for earthenware pottery-making skills in the Kgatleng District, which has been inscribed on the Urgent Safeguarding List since 2012. With a budget of US$68,261 the project will seek to strengthen the transmission of pottery-making skills through the training of young potters, field work and the development of educational materials. As for Seychelles, the Fund will provide US$90,000 to support a capacity-building programme at the national level, covering both the implementation of the Convention and community-based inventorying.
El Salvador has also been granted financial assistance of US$24,995 to revitalize the intangible cultural heritage of Santo Domingo de Guzmán, in the west of the country, by making use of information and communication technologies. Young people will again be targeted to carry out inventory work on oral traditions and contribute to the development and dissemination of printed and audiovisual materials in Spanish and Náhuat. US$144,430 were granted to Kenya for the safeguarding of Enkipaata, Eunoto and Olng’esherr, three male rites of passage of the Maasai community. Community based inventorying will be an essential component of this project. The Fund’s support should allow a comprehensive mapping exercise to be carried out, with a view to protecting the natural spaces associated with the rites, undertaking research and documentation and organizing community meetings between elders and youth, as well as mentoring young people for future transmission.
The 2003 Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage provides the possibility for States Parties to request International Assistance for programmes and projects aimed at safeguarding intangible cultural heritage. See form ICH-04 and its instructions on the forms page to request International Assistance under the Intangible Cultural Heritage Fund. Requests up to US$100,000 can now be examined by the Bureau and submitted at any time.