Emergency response to safeguard the intangible cultural heritage of Lalibela, World Heritage property, and the surrounding area endangered by conflict

  • Financial assistance:
    • US$ 150,000 granted in 2023
  • Dates of implementation:
    • 18/10/2023 - 15/04/2025
  • Documents:

Benefitting country(ies): Ethiopia


Implemented by the Ethiopian Heritage Authority, in collaboration with the Association of St. Lalibela and Surrounding Heritage Conservation and Protection, this three-year project aims to contribute to the revival of the traditional church schools in Lalibela and the surrounding areas. These church schools, situated within the World Heritage property of the ‘Rock-Hewn Churches, Lalibela’, have been temporarily closed due to ongoing conflicts in northern Ethiopia and the COVID-19 pandemic. The project aims at providing technical and financial support to the church schools, as well as to civil society and government institutions. It will also facilite trainings and other activities aimed at safeguarding living heritage. The project is expected to contribute to the sustainability of the church schools, which are vital for the survival of the religious practices and the conservation of the World Heritage property. The project is furthermore expected to have a broader impact within and beyond Lalibela through experience-sharing and training-of-trainers programmes, which will revitalize the traditional management system for safeguarding living heritage enacted by practitioners and church communities. Furthermore, this project reflects an integrated approach seeking a synergy between the 1972 Convention and 2003 Convention for the conservation and safeguarding of cultural heritage.

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