About the project

Abandoned and ruined churches, monasteries, dwelling caves from the Middle Ages, graveyards or prehistoric cult sites…Throughout remote areas in the South Caucasus one can find a large number of neglected cultural assets, that are in deep need of care and attention. Under the slogan “Crossing borders to save, preserve and care” this issue is currently addressed by the SOS Culture project which was launched in January 2012 by the Foundation for the Preservation of Wildlife and Cultural Assets (FPWC). 

With an overall duration of 24 months, the SOS Culture project is funded by the European Union within the framework of the Eastern Partnership Culture Program and is implemented by FPWC in cooperation with the dvv international – Georgia Country office and Research on Armenian Architecture Foundation. The overall EU contribution to SOS Culture project is 492,754 Euro.

The overall objective of the project is to register and preserve endangered cultural assets in the remote border regions of Armenia and Georgia with the involvement of local citizenry. Involvement of local communities will in its turn promote economic, social and cultural development in the areas, covered by the project. 

The approach of the SOS Culture project is rooted in the idea that well preserved and explored historic sites have a tremendous positive influence on the creation of an environment, which nurtures sustainable economic, social and human development in remote and impoverished regions, making those regions attractive for tourists. 

SOS Culture relies on the active involvement of youths (age 14 -23) from different national and ethnic origins living in the target areas of Armenia and Georgia. The young people participate in protection and research activities, implemented in the vicinity of their villages. These activities include cultural assets of different origins and religions, as well as pre-historic sites and medieval architectural monuments. By doing this, the project underlines that “Cultural assets belong to everybody”: regardless of nationality, religious faith or language, people living nearby a monument should care and preserve. This instils a new approach and knowledge about local cultural assets among the members of the youth clubs, established by FPWC and its Georgian project partner dvv international. Participating in the project activities, the members of the youth clubs support the cultural and touristic development of their regions. 

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Latest News

The Shamshadin honey and berry festival

For the second time the Shamshadin honey and berry festival will take place in the town of Berd found in the Tavush region on August 18th. The objectives are to stimulate the realization of the projects planned for the region, accentuate the importance of Shamshadin as the center in producing honey and berries, as well as promote the development of tourism and infrastructure in local communities. The first time the festival took place was in 2012 and was a great success, which served as a basis [more]

Cross-Cutting Workshop for EU funded projects

A three day workshop on “Cross-Cutting Themes in Our Projects” took place on 11-13 July 2013 in Dilijan, Armenia. The workshop was organised by the Regional Monitoring and Capacity Building Unit (RMCBU) for 6 out of 15 projects implemented within the EASTERN PARTNERSHIP CULTURE PROGRAMME. The six projects with 24 months duration which participated at the Workshop were: SOS CULTURE: Saving Endangered Cultural Assets in Remote Regions of Armenia and Georgia by Involving Local Youth in Their Pr[more]

Training on Human Rights

On July 1st children from the Berdavan SOS Culture youth club met Hayk and Shant, trainers from “Youth for Future” NGO. Hayk has educated the youth club members on behalf of human rights. The training was delivered through an exciting game, which made it more interesting and comprehensible for the young people. Shant and the youth club members have also discussed various topics that they were concerned about and interested in. Every member came up with his own idea for the solution of the probl[more]

SOS Culture is starting a series of Art History Trainings

Within the last two weeks SOS Culure project has introduced a course of trainings on Art History to its youh clubs. Anna Koltcova, the teacher of this course is an SOS Culture volunteer. Her educational background covers studying in places like Russia, Japan, USA. Currently Anna is enrolled in one of American Universities in Rome, Italy. These trainings are designed to not only introduce youh club members to cultural heritage of different cultures and periods, but also teach them the languag[more]

Priest Vigen Ghazaryan about Akhtala St. Mary church

We are now standing with You in front of a church which is unique and the only one in the world. There is a value in this church that makes it unique and also makes Armenia presentable in the world cultural context. Akhtala St. Mary Church is the only church in the world, where murals of about 960 square meters are preserved and these murals are 800 years old. This combination is not repeated anywhere in the world. You can find any church in the world with older murals, but they will not be of a[more]

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