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Every year on April 18, the world commemorates International Monuments and Sites Day in order to promote culture and heritage. Another term for it is World Heritage Day. The International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS), headquartered in Paris, is the driving force behind this worldwide event.
Its purpose is to encourage local communities and people to recognise the importance of cultural heritage in their lives. The day also focuses on creating awareness about the diversity and vulnerability of cultural assets, as well as preservation actions for monuments.
History and Importance
ICOMOS suggested in 1982 that April 18 be declared as the International Day of Monuments and Sites. The date was accepted by UNESCO during its 22nd General Conference the following year, and it became a global event. Every year since then, ICOMOS has proposed a topic for this day.
The topic of World Heritage Day in 2022 is Heritage and Climate. ICOMOS has encouraged its members, individuals, and organisations to organise activities around the theme. This year’s theme provides an opportunity to respond to problems of climate justice and equity in order to conserve heritage. It is also an opportunity to debate how we might provide equal protection for vulnerable groups.
“This day gives a timely opportunity to exhibit initiatives to promote the full potential of heritage conservation research and practise to deliver climate-resilient paths to boost sustainable development while advocating for just transitions to low-carbon futures,” ICOMOS stated.
Those who want to host events can do so by referring to disaster risk (both natural and man-made), vernacular heritage, heritage in conflict, and heritage and democracy, according to the organisation.