Being held under the patronage of and in the presence of His Highness Sheikh Dr Sultan bin Mohamed Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, the first session of the Arab Cultural Heritage Forum, will shine the light on the regional and international efforts to protect, preserve and promote Arab heritage.
On this occasion, ICCROM’s grand prize for the conservation of cultural heritage in Arab region (sites and museums), which is awarded every two years, will also be presented in an effort to encourage the best practices of conservation of cultural heritage.
The prestigious Sharjah award is dedicated to recognising and rewarding practices that contribute to the protection and revitalisation of tangible cultural heritage in the Arab world. The Award rewards the interventions that seek to conserve the tangible cultural heritage that has a historical, cultural or scientific importance to the local community or beyond
Offering details about the upcoming event during a recent press conference at the headquarters of ICCROM-Sharjah in the presence of representatives of various government entities, international agencies and specialists, Dr Zaki Aslan, Director of ICCROM’s Regional Conservation Centre (ICCROM- Sharjah), thanked HH the Ruler of Sharjah for his constant support and guidance. He lauded the efforts of Sharjah Heritage Institute and the Emirate Sharjah in preserving the Arab heritage and their prominent role in protecting human and cultural heritage.
The first of its kind forum in Sharjah is in line with the objectives of the ICCROM-Sharjah and complements its programmes aimed at enhancing the culture of heritage and spreading awareness of its importance and preservation from crises and discussing its various issues and topics, emphasised Dr Aslan.
“The Forum aims to come up with a document conveying an Arab vision on the concept of cultural heritage in the Arab World, and recommendations that can be implemented to contribute in achieving the goals of the forum,” he added.
ICCROM-ATHAR (Architectural and Archaeological Tangible Heritage in the Arab Region) is a regional conservation centre founded by ICCROM (International Centre for the Study of the Preservation and Restoration of Cultural Property), and the Government of Sharjah.
ICCROM’s 27th General Assembly, convened in Rome in November 2011, decided to establish a regional office of ICCROM in Sharjah in the United Arab Emirates where it has been based since its inception in 2012.
ICCROM-ATHAR Regional Conservation Centre in Sharjah is a continuation of ICCROM’s ATHAR programme, which has dedicated its activities since it was launched in 2004, 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 heritage institutions to manage heritage sites, historic monuments and museum collections on a sustainable basis.
These objectives are being achieved through a series of regional educational and field activities including:
ICCROM-ATHAR’s professional training programmes are aimed at enhancing conservation practices and recognition of professional accomplishments (through affiliation with university programmes);
ICCROM-ATHAR offers support, co-ordination, facilitation and provision of technical expertise and advice when requested by the Arab states in the fields of conservation and management;
Dissemination of Information
Sharing the outcome of the Centre’s experience and activities including research, experiences, publications from seminars, training manuals for professionals and teaching kits for teachers of the young;
Symposia, Workshops and Seminars
Bringing together the best cultural heritage experts, academics and thinkers to address current themes important in and for the region’s development goals.
Outreach and Advocacy
Aimed at raising public awareness and support for good conservation practice, ICCROM-ATHAR award and other outreach activities target various audiences such as schools, the general public and professional communities.