We are pleased to announce that, on 10 September 2020 at the 8th session of the General Assembly of States Parties to UNESCO’s 2003 Convention for Safeguarding Intangible Cultural Heritage, the Persian Garden Institute for Living Heritage (PGILH) was granted accreditation to the intergovernmental Committee of the Convention under Resolution 8.GA 13 of the meeting. We are currently the only Iranian NGO to be granted this honour and we join 19 other NGOs from the Asia-Pacific region, which currently makes up only 15% of the accredited NGOs worldwide despite its population size and the number of member countries.
Under Article 9 of the 2003 Intangible Heritage Convention, NGOs with “recognized competence in the field of the intangible cultural heritage” can be accredited “to act in an advisory capacity to the Committee”. As an accredited NGO, we now become a member of the ICH NGO Forum which serves as a platform for communication, networking, exchange and cooperation by and for all non-governmental organizations accredited to the Intergovernmental Committee in the framework of the 2003 UNESCO Convention. We count among our members two Global Facilitators for UNESCO’s capacity-building strategy within the 2003 Convention – Dr. Yadollah Parmoun and Dr. Janet Blake – who are internationally-recognized as having the expertise to conduct capacity-building activities for UNESCO in the fields of training, advisory service to governments and others and other aspects of implementing the 2003 Convention. We are therefore well-placed not only to promote ICH within Iran and the region, but also to provide advisory services on the international stage. We look forward to enhancing our cooperation activities with relevant partners within Iran, in UNESCO and, of course, with the intergovernmental Committee to the Convention.
PGILH is a non-governmental organization that is active in a number of areas of safeguarding intangible cultural heritage (ICH) within the terms of the 2003 Convention, including among other things: conducting research on ICH elements and on their safeguarding; conducting needs assessments on heritage; promotion and awareness-raising; capacity-building and other information and educational activities; providing expert services for the identification, documentation inventorying of ICH elements; providing stewardship services for museums and other memory institutions; advising on sustainable development with regard to ICH elements and safeguarding; providing expert services in preparing files for international inscription and international assistance; and providing policy and legal advice in Iran and overseas.