Cultural Heritage as a New Component for Peace and Security
Protracted crises show that international development and humanitarian aid require more and more complex approaches. Cultural heritage can play a key role in promoting peace, democracy and sustainable development by fostering tolerance, inter-cultural and inter-faith dialogue and mutual understanding.
Cultural heritage has an essential role in resilience-building, by strengthening community identity and local stability in the long term.
We should keep the focus on this important topic and we should find those ways where our assistance impacts not just a building, but the whole community beyond.
Church Reconstructions – Lebanon (3.270.000 EUR)
The Church Reconstructions project aims to archaeologically excavate and strengthen the structures of old Medieval and Ottoman era churches in remote mountainous areas of Lebanon, the long term purpose of the project is to settle special trails for cultural and religious tourism in Lebanon, that would contribute to the catering industry in remote towns and thus, slowing or even countering emigration from these areas.
The Government of Hungary supports financially the project through Péter Pázmány Catholic University which is responsible of controlling the execution of the project, the Hungarian University has a special partnership with the Lebanese Zniversité Saint Esprit de Kaslik which is responsible of controlling the contractors working on site, the execution happens after approvals by the Lebanese Directorate General of Antiquities, a Lebanese national authority that reports to UNESCO.
33 churches have been renovated between 2017-2019 and 30 churches are to be accomplished by the middle of 2024. The total amount dedicated by the Government of Hungary for this complex project is 3,27 million EUR. The project has given a major push for Hungary in cultural diplomacy field and contributed to help employ hundreds of Lebanese youth (and many Syrian refugees) in the remote areas of the Mount Lebanon and North Lebanon Governorates.