Safeguarding “ The living heritage” of Jamaica

17 December 2012 – Jamaica hosted a national workshop on the implementation of the 2003 Convention for the Safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage from 10 to 14 December 2012. This workshop was organized by The African Caribbean Institute of Jamaica / Jamaica Memory Bank, the Jamaican National Commission for UNESCO and the UNESCO Kingston Cluster Office for the Caribbean, and brought together government officials, non-governmental organizations and community practitioners to partake in the workshop on the implementation of the 2003 Convention for the Safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage.

Among specially invited guest at the official opening ceremony on 10 December 2012 at the Courtleigh Hotel and Suites in Kingston were H.E. Yasuo Takase, Ambassador of Japan to Jamaica, Belize and The Bahamas; Dr. Kwame Boafo, Director and Representative, UNESCO Kingston Cluster Office; Mr. Everton Hannam, Secretary General, Jamaica National Commission for UNESCO; Mr. Vivian Crawford, Executive Director, Institute of Jamaica as well as Mr. Joseph Pereira, Chairman of the ACIJ/JMB. Mr. Ainsley Henriques, Member of Council, Institute

of Jamaica represented the Minister of Youth and Culture, Hon. Lisa Hanna.

In his address, H.E. Yasuo Takase, indicated that the importance of cultural traditions cannot be overstated as these traditions
“make us who we are” restating his governments’ commitment to aiding in the process of safeguarding cultural traditions through the Japan Funds in Trust (J-FIT).

Practitioners who participated in the workshop included members of the Maroon, Rastafari and Revival communities. The workshop concluded with a Kingston Action Plan for ICH

proposing continued work in the following areas: Awareness raising; Community participation;

Inventorying; Planning and communication among stakeholders; Cultural policy; Regional and International Cooperation. This workshop series is part of a sub-regional project being implemented in Belize, Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago within the context of UNESCO’s Global Strategy on capacity building on intangible cultural heritage.