Kateryna Chuyeva, Deputy Minister of Culture and Information Policy of Ukraine, took part in a meeting of the Advisory Group of Donors of the UNESCO Heritage Emergency Fund in Paris, France. During the visit, she also held a series of working meetings with representatives of UNESCO, including with Lazare Eloundou Assomo, Director of the UNESCO World Heritage Centre.
The meeting of the Advisory Group of Donors was chaired by the co-chairs Ernesto Ottone, who is also Assistant Director-General for Culture at UNESCO, and Halvor Hvideberg, Permanent Delegate of Norway to UNESCO. Ernesto Ottone highlighted that Ukraine’s experience has confirmed the necessity of developing new mechanisms for the provision and coordination of assistance, as this is the first time where the Fund is providing assistance during the war, rather than in a post-conflict or post-war period.
The report of the Fund for the year 2022 was also discussed, which will be translated into all official languages of the UN except for russian. The main donors of the Fund, including Norway, Estonia, Canada, Qatar, and the Principality of Monaco, who were present at the event, confirmed their readiness to continue providing support to Ukraine.
“On behalf of the Ministry of Culture and Information Policy of Ukraine, I would like to express our gratitude for all the support we have received and continue to receive from UNESCO and the member states of the Convention. No country can overcome the challenges that arise when war comes to its land alone. Ukraine’s experience confirms that the world has not abandoned us in this fight. We believe in the effectiveness of international organizations and the efficacy of mutual support and cooperation. The numerous projects initiated in the past year in the field of tangible and intangible heritage, with the support of UNESCO and other international partners, both within and outside of Ukraine, instill confidence in Ukrainians and give us the strength to overcome the challenges of wartime. Everything we are doing now lays the foundation for building a sustainable civil society, professional communities, and a new model of protection and management of our national heritage. This is not just immediate assistance, it is an investment in the future. We are ready to share the experience we have gained and hope that one day Ukraine will be able to provide assistance to those in need on its own,” said Kateryna Chuyeva.
The Heritage Emergency Fund is a non-targeted funding mechanism involving multiple donors. It was established by UNESCO in 2015 with the goal of enabling the organization to respond rapidly and effectively to emergency situations caused by conflicts and disasters. It is one of UNESCO’s principal funds that has been actively mobilized since the onset of russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine to support emergency response measures for the protection of cultural heritage and cultural diversity in Ukraine. Currently, the Fund has provided support for 14 projects in the field of cultural heritage in Ukraine, in particular those related to digital transformation, preservation of tangible and intangible heritage, support for women artists and experts in the field of cultural heritage, countering illegal trafficking of Ukrainian cultural heritage, and other areas.