Safeguarding material heritage

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Based on the lessons learned from the illicit trafficking of Cultural Heritage Training in a Regional Context
The three statutory heritage institutions namely National Gallery of Zimbabwe, National Museums and Monuments of Zimbabwe

Based on the lessons learned from the illicit trafficking of Cultural Heritage Training in a Regional Context
The three statutory heritage institutions namely National Gallery of Zimbabwe, National Museums and Monuments of Zimbabwe and National Archives of Zimbabwe organised a stakeholder’s workshop on the 3rd of September to discuss the prevention and fight against illicit trafficking of cultural property in Zimbabwe.

The workshop was part of a broader training programme funded by the United Nation Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO), aimed at building national capacities, ranging from security forces to heritage professionals, as well as raising awareness of communities for the protection and safeguarding of the rich and diverse heritage of Zimbabwe.
It aimed at fostering national and international networking and action against illicit trafficking of our cultural property, as well as at exploring critical threats and challenges underpinning the enforcement of an efficient protection system in Zimbabwe because most of the state security agencies attended the workshop

Many lessons have been learnt with regards to the safeguarding of heritage and through the heritage is an interdisciplinary field which draws on archaeology bas well as architecture, art, economy, technology and law.
They was the mention that archives are very important for future reference  hence stakeholders must always put records  in place and find an inventory which is accessible to all the cultural heritage institutions, police and all the stakeholders.
Culture can give people a connection to certain social values, beliefs, religions and customs. It allows them to identify with others of similar mindsets and backgrounds. Cultural heritage can provide an automatic sense of unity and belonging within a group and allows us people to better understand previous generations as well as historical phenomena.
The arts as part of cultural heritage like literature, music, painting and sculpture are essential in a peaceful co-habitation of the human species as it offers them an alternative point of view. In presenting a different picture people will be more lenient in accepting differences in real life as well that in turn will stimulate mutual respect. That is why cultural heritage plays such a vital role in the democratization process.

The workshop encouraged the stakeholders and state security agencies to bring forth security measures in protecting our cultural heritage. It also explored the issue on public awareness of the importance of intangible cultural heritage and promote exchange of innovative practices and sustainable strategies in relation to the conservation and revitalisation of intangible cultural heritage.

The workshop sought to strengthen cooperation and collaboration between practitioners, policy-makers, researchers, activists and communities in the effort to sustain intangible cultural heritage; and promote sustainable development and dynamic growth of intangible cultural heritage for present and future generations.

Raphael Chikukwa, the Chief-Curator at the National Gallery of Zimbabwe said intangible cultural heritage encompasses human activities, which are our culture, our practices and our traditions yet our heritage and history is not protected.

The statutory Heritage institutions highlighted recommendations concerning the future of cultural heritage and have achieved important results on which future actions should be built. The workshop is going to be followed by an extensive training session for stakeholders directly stationed on ports and borders to begin the identification of Cultural Heritage works.