ICOM Updates Project on "Supporting West and Central African Museums in the Face of the Covid-19 Pandemic"

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In July, 2020, ICOM announced the ad-hoc cooperation with the International Alliance for the Protection of Heritage in Conflict Areas (ALIPH) to respond to the Covid-19 crisis in conflict and post-conflict areas. ALIPH has funded a total of 74,200 US dollars to support 14 museums located in five West and Central African countries. A series of projects were rolled out and are being monitored by ICOM's Heritage Protection Department. The two organizations are developing projects to improve museum security, provide staff training and make the collections accessible online.

The project "Supporting West and Central African Museums in the Face of the Covid-19 pandemic" focuses on four key priorities. The first is to strengthen risk management. ICOM is currently working with National Committee in Burkina Faso to safeguard and secure collections at several museums located in conflict areas.

The second priority is to face the COVID-19 crisis. ICOM's Mali National Committee, along with six Malian museums, has contributed to the drafting of an emergency management manual to train museum staff. 

Inventory and collection management is another focus of the project. ICOM Cameroon has developed an extensive collection management project for the Royal Museum of the Mokolo Lamidat and will proceed to a global evaluation of the state of conservation of the objects, their cleaning and labeling. 

The last priority is digitalization. The Badagry Heritage Museum in the Lagos State of Nigeria is finalizing a massive research project about the transatlantic slave trade, including a digitization of the collections that will allow the institution to increase accessibility.

Source: ICOM