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African World Heritage Day

May 5th 2020

Youth, Entrepreneurship and Heritage Sustainability in Africa

Due to COVID-19, 90% of World Heritage sites around the globe are closed or partially closed, and many of them are in Africa.

As African World Heritage sites cope with the current situation, they are also looking ahead to the post-Covid time and planning for the short and long-term. The 2020 edition of African World Heritage Day will celebrate the theme “Youth, Entrepreneurship and Heritage Sustainability in Africa” with several special initiatives.


A Webinar/Zoom conference with the African World Heritage Fund

This online debate will bring together young people, policy makers, site managers, and members of the local community to reflect on the impact of COVID-19 on the lives and livelihoods of African communities and heritage sites. Over 200 participants from Africa and around the world will discuss strategies to build resilience and overcome the crisis while ensuring the sustainability of World Heritage in Africa.

04:30 a.m. in Los Angeles
07:30 a.m. in New York
11:30 a.m. in Dakar
01:30 p.m. in Paris
01:30 p.m. in Johannesburg
02:30 p.m. in Kampala
08:30 p.m. in Tokyo

Participate Watch the webinar


An Instagram Live session with student and climate activist Vanessa Nakaté

Vanessa started a climate movement in Uganda with her individual strike in January 2019, to oppose the passivity of governments in the face of climate change. In January 2020, she and other youth climate activists from around the world publicly requested participants at the World Economic Forum in Davos to call on companies, banks and governments to immediately stop subsidizing fossil fuels.

07:00 a.m. in Los Angeles
10:00 a.m. in New York 
02:00 p.m. in Dakar
04:00 p.m. in Paris
04:00 p.m. in Johannesburg
05:00 p.m. in Kampala
11:00 p.m. in Tokyo

Watch the session


An Instagram Live session with Pascall Taruvinga, Site Manager of Robben Island, South Africa

Used at various times as a prison, a hospital and a military base, Robben Island is a symbol of the triumph of democracy and freedom over oppression and racism. Join the conversation at this historic site with the Chief Heritage office of the Robben Island World Heritage site to share experience and reflection on how heritage as part of culture should be mobilized or promoted in a period of a disaster such as Covid-19 pandemic.

08:00 a.m. in Los Angeles
11:00 a.m. in New York 
03:00 p.m. in Dakar
05:00 p.m. in Paris
05:00 p.m. in Johannesburg
06:00 p.m. in Kampala
12:00 p.m. in Antananarivo

Watch the session

Fasil Ghebi (Ethiopia)

Message from the Director-General
"At a time of crisis, anxiety and uncertainty, the world’s cultural and natural heritage is an invaluable resource that fuels our resilience, helps us find solutions, and brightens the future. This is the role that the African World Heritage, celebrated on this Day, can play for the African populations as well as for humanity as a whole. "

— Audrey Azoulay, Director-General,
on the occasion of African World Heritage Day

Download the complete message in PDF format
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#MyAfricanHeritage and #ShareOurHeritage are the hashtags you can use and follow on African World Heritage Day.

Monday, 4 May 2020
Regions (1)
  • Africa
See Also (1)
Keywords: Africa