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Closing Event Marks Success of ‘Museum Outreach Programme’ in Namibia

todayNovember 21, 2023 6

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Museum Outreach Programme

The culmination of the ‘Museum Outreach Programme,’ a joint initiative by the Goethe-Institut and the University of Namibia, was celebrated at the closing event held on November 17, 2023. The project, spanning 46 months, received funding from the European Union with EUR 200,000 (approximately 4 million Namibian Dollars) and the Goethe-Institut with EUR 64,000 (approximately 1.3 million Namibian Dollars).

The overarching goal of the initiative was to fortify civil society and cultural diversity in Namibia by fostering social cohesion, inter-ethnic dialogue, and cultural tolerance. H.E. Ana-Beatriz Martins, EU Ambassador to Namibia, highlighted the project’s achievements, emphasizing the strengthened cultural rights, particularly of marginalized and indigenous communities. She underscored the importance of empowering local communities through community-based museums, providing them with a platform to express, preserve traditions, and explore their roots.

Dennis Schroeder, Director of the Goethe-Institut Namibia, outlined three key pillars of the initiative. Firstly, it focused on transforming community-based museums into interactive spaces. Secondly, it aimed at empowering local communities and indigenous minorities through conservation training. Lastly, the initiative sought to professionalize heritage practitioners, contributing to the overall development of Namibia’s museums and heritage sector.

Prof. Alfons Mosimande, the Executive Dean at the University of Namibia (UNAM), commended the Museum Outreach Programme for laying the foundation for a university museum program. He highlighted its role as a beacon for knowledge and cultural preservation.

In her concluding remarks, EU Ambassador Ana-Beatriz Martins encouraged Namibians to actively support and value community-based and community-run museums. She urged citizens to visit, volunteer, and engage with these museums, ensuring the preservation and thriving of Namibia’s rich tapestry of cultures and traditions.

“Let us continue to cherish and support these invaluable institutions,” she proudly stated, acknowledging their role in preserving the nation’s cultural heritage.

Written by: Dilia Mazula

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