Publication Date: November 18, 2019
Publication Location: WASHINGTON
Contact: Kathryn Schoenberger   |   [email protected]

Following two years of fruitful exchanges through the Communities Connecting Heritage (CCH) program, World Learning is pleased to announce the six new cultural heritage projects that will receive funding in its third cycle. CCH, sponsored by the U.S. Department of State with funding provided by the U.S. Government, and administered by World Learning, empowers youth to protect the cultural heritage of underserved communities around the world.

“World Learning is proud to be part of the Communities Connecting Heritage program and support these exchanges, which promote mutual understanding and international ties through experiential learning and the arts,” said Cari Graves, World Learning’s director of youth global exchanges. “We look forward to welcoming 12 diverse cultural organizations and dozens of participants from across the globe in the coming cycle.”

Through virtual and in-person exchanges and exhibitions, the program supports new partnerships between U.S. and international cultural organizations and the communities they serve. CCH specifically helps these communities preserve their tangible and intangible cultural heritage, reinforce positive narratives, and advance cultural heritage through community outreach and public education.

The projects will be carried out among six U.S. organizations and six international organizations. Each organization was matched with an overseas counterpart during initial training and has been collaborating to develop engaging cultural heritage projects. The following six projects will be implemented in the next 12 months:

  • Cultural Heritage without Borders Albania (Albania) and Comal Heritage Food Incubator by Focus Points (Colorado)
    The Cultural Herstory project will engage entrepreneurial women from Albania and Colorado, whose businesses express their cultural heritage, and create a book in which they tell their own stories through the lens of cultural traditions and customs.
  • Alexandru Stefulescu Gorj County Museum (Romania) and Oregon Folklife Network (Oregon)
    Exploring Indigeneity, Place, Traditions, and Transmission will take a place-based and intergenerational approach to exploring the transmission of Native American and Romanian indigenous communities place-based, intangible cultural heritage, such as regalia making, storytelling, traditional folk costumes, rug weaving, and woodcarvings.
  • Hungarian Open Air Museum (Hungary) and Outside the Lens (California)
    Work Play Love: A Photographic Exploration of Past, Present, and Future aims to empower youth in Hungary and California to explore their cultural identities through the dynamic lens of the past, present, and future, culminating in a teen-created photographic exhibition.
  • Katha Ghera (Nepal) and Carolyn Dorfman Dance (New Jersey)
    Empowering the Female Voice Through Theater and Dance will engage young female dancers and theater artists from Nepal and New Jersey to create dance and theater pieces that celebrate and elevate the power and essentialness of the female voice in cultural preservation, evolution, and change.
  • Musrara – The Naggar School of Art and Society (Israel) and Wisdom of the Elders (Oregon)
    The Hero’s Journey of Transformation will engage students and artists in Israel from Jewish, Muslim, and Christian communities and multigenerational Pacific Northwest Native American storytellers, artists, and other cultural leaders to highlight the power of cultural arts to heal trauma, develop self-confidence, and strengthen cultural identity.
  • Petra National Trust (Jordan) and Pacolet Junior Appalachian Musicians at Tryon Fine Arts Center(PacJAM at TFAC) (North Carolina)
    Illuminations Through Music and Heritage will engage music students, community members, and teachers in North Carolina and Jordan to help them connect through traditional music and dance and build research and documentation skills by recording and conducting interviews in their communities.

The 12 organizations will now receive additional training on topics such as virtual exchange, experiential education, and participant care to prepare them to carry out their projects. The virtual exchanges will commence in early 2020, leading up to the in-person exchanges and public exhibitions throughout the spring and summer.

About ECA

The U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs moves people to move ideas. ECA builds relations between the people of the United States and the people of other countries through academic, cultural, sports, and professional exchanges, as well as public-private partnerships. The State Department’s cultural diplomacy programs employ the arts to advance U.S foreign policy by sharing America’s artistic excellence, demonstrating America’s respect for other cultures, creating international networks, and deepening trust.

Contact: [email protected]

About World Learning

World Learning works globally to enhance the capacity and commitment of individuals, institutions, and communities to create a more peaceful and just world through education, sustainable development, and exchange. Our programs advance leadership in more than 150 countries.