Benedetta’s first steps into cooperation for the protection of the local intangible heritage

Hello everyone!

I’m Benedetta, I’m 26 years old and I come from Caserta. For about a month I have been in Bolzano, at the EURAC research centre, for my IVY experience to follow a project called ‘Living ICH’.

The aim of the project is to facilitate cooperation between Italy and Switzerland and to protect the Intangible Cultural Heritage (ICH) as stipulated in the 2003 UNESCO Convention. This in practice translates into a focus on cereal and fruit growing, as well as on traditional practices and techniques that have been handed down from generation to generation.

As soon as I arrived, I won’t deny that I had some difficulty in finding my way around all these concepts, which at first glance may seem very complex. For this reason, what helped me a lot was the discussion and dialogue with Ricarda and Elisa, who have followed the project from its very beginnings. They told me all the life stories of the producers – now known as ‘Custodi di Ricchezza/Hüter der Vielfalt’ – that they had listened to over the previous years and how these served to inspire ‘Living ICH’.

At the moment I am totally at the service of the project and have different tasks as needed. Some days there are documents to write and creative brainstorms with the team and others we put on our trekking shoes, take the bus and set off to enchanting destinations to spread the project’s objectives. During some trips, it was magic to be able to admire real picturesque centres/natural paradises in the Vinschgau Valley and in South Tyrol in general.

I have just returned from a field trip to the centre of Certosa (Karthaus). There, the travelling exhibition “Hüter der Vielfalt” began, which will take the stories of the Custodi to the project areas (Vinschgau and Lower Engadine/Val Müstair), in the hope of inspiring more and more communities to the spirit of cooperation for the protection of the local intangible heritage.

– Benedetta, IVY Project Partner for the Interreg project LIVING ICH at EURAC Research.

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