Projects with Kenya
Capacity Building Programme Assessment
Partners: South African Heritage Resource Centre (SAHRA), Fort Jesus Museum
Between 1976-1980 the remains of the portuguese vessel, Santo Antonio de Tanna were excavated, and recently the hull and 15,000 of the recovered artefacts were researched and conserved by the Fort Jesus Museum in Mombasa. Conservators were employed to undertake this work, but as maritime and underwater archaeology is a relatively new aspect to heritage and archaeological work in Kenya, they desire to enhance the capacity in implementing such programmes. A representative of the Fort Jesus Museum visited Tanzania in 2009 during the CIE-Tanzanian capacity building programme, and also attended part of the Robben Island Regional Workshops in February-March 2010. Interest was expressed in our capacity building programme and its relevance for Kenya, as there is a need to develop a larger active group from the Kenyan stakeholders, who could be involved in their maritime and underwater cultural heritage work.
Following this initial meeting, representatives from CIE and SAHRA visited the Fort Jesus Museum in order to discuss regional collaboration in the field of maritime and underwater cultural heritage. Our team were impressed with the conservation facilities that were in place which has the potential to be developed into a Centre for Excellence in the region and maritime archaeological collaboration.
It was recommended that CIE’s capacity building programme could be used to enhance the capacity in implementing maritime and underwater cultural heritage programmes in Kenya. Kenya was one of the five countries that endorsed the application sent to the African World Heritage Fund (AWHF) submitted in 2010. Kenya possesses two World Heritage Sites that would be suitable to centre activities around; Lamu Old Town (2001) and the Fort Jesus Monument and Mobasa Old Town (2011).
Africa World Heritage Fund (AWHF) Proposal
Partners: Africa World Heritage Fund (AWHF)
In Southern Africa there is a clear need to increase the understanding of the value of cultural heritage amongst the local communities, particularly the richness that is underwater cultural heritage. Underwater and maritime sites have been very little explored, especially in Africa, yet they contain a wealth of knowledge on the past, such as the relationship with the coastal communities with the sea, which is at most times taken for granted. Africa has witnessed many voyages of discovery and trading activities, which have left thousands of shipwrecks on Africa’s coasts and formation of new cultures. Some of these trade routes were interlinked with the trade in human beings and the world merging of cultures, which subsequently redefined Africa and its coastal landscapes.
In 2010 CIE assisted South Africa, Tanzania, Mozambique, Namibia and Kenya in developing a project proposal to meet this need, which was submitted to the AWHF. The project involves the implementation of pilot investigations for regional cooperation and capacity building on Maritime and Underwater Cultural Heritage (MUCH), for countries that have ratified the UNESCO World Heritage Convention 1972. A number of World Heritage Sites including Lamu in Kenya, Zanzibar and Kilwa in Tanzania, Ilha de Mozambique, and Robben Island in South Africa, with related maritime and underwater cultural heritage sites will form the basis for investigation and development of strategic management plans within a local, national and regional context. The projects have begun to be implemented since 2011
Sub-Saharan Regional Collaboration
Partners: South African Heritage Resources Agency (SAHRA), Robben Island Museum, Africa World Heritage Fund (AWHF), Departments of Arts and Culture (DAC) South Africa
A regional meeting on Maritime and Underwater Cultural Heritage (MUCH) was held at Robben Island in South Africa from 17th-19th February 2010. This international workshop had participants from Tanzania, South Africa, Namibia, Mozambique and Kenya. At this meeting it was decided to form a MUCH regional group, in order strengthen the collaboration in this area. The group formulated a number of goals and objectives for the group to pursue in the future. These were written down in the African Regional MUCH Agreement, signed by all participants at the Nelson Mandela Gateway to Robben Island.
This collaboration has resulted in a number of productive efforts. For example the group developed a grant application which was submitted to the African World Heritage Fund for a five year project focused upon capacity building around MUCH activities associated with the World Heritage Convention and World Heritage Sites in the participating countries. CIE as an organisation provides support to this group in their activities and proposals.