Successful finalization of project „Fire Rituals and Symbols – United in Diversity”


On 22.03.2016 Sozopol Foundation, observing the requirements of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), submitted final report on the project „Fire Rituals and Symbols – United in Diversity”.

The project was funded under the UNESCO Participation Programme 2014 – 2015 and co-funded by Sozopol Foundation. The main objective was to promote and develop cultural diversity, intercultural and interethnic dialogue. The implementation of project activities helped to build the capacity of young people regarding safeguarding of intangible cultural heritage through familiarization with the ritual “Nestinarstvo” inscribed in 2009 in the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of UNESCO.

A photo taken during the World Forum “The role of youth for safeguarding the tangible and intangible cultural heritage”, organized by the NGO – UNESCO Liaison Committee hosted by Sozopol Foundation

Young people were acquainted in detail with this extremely significant for our country ritual through conducted a two-day seminar in November 2015. The event was attended by students focused their interest in various fields, but willing to work for the preservation and promotion of Bulgarian intangible cultural heritage. During the seminar, all showed great interest in the concerned topic and after its end they were given certificates of completed training.

Photo of prof. Violeta Nesheva, scientific consultant of Sozopol Foundation and the participants
in the two-day seminar organized by Sozopol Foundation in November 2015

Sozopol Foundation, as the first Bulgarian NGO a consultative partner of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and a member of the NGO-UNESCO Liaison Committee carries out its activities very actively. Following its objectives and policy to actively work in the direction of preserving and promoting tangible and intangible cultural heritage, the Foundation started development of a project „The Kukeri custom in Bulgaria and Serbia – cultural tradition of two neighboring nations”.

Photo from the international festival “Surva” in the town of Pernik, inscribed in 2015
in the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of UNESCO

With this project, Sozopol Foundation in partnership with “Ring of Balkans” Foundation, Serbia, will apply for funding under the UNESCO Participation Programme 2016 – 2017. The future possible realization of the project is of great importance to preserving the traditions of Eastern Europe, since of December 2nd last year, within the tenth session of the Intergovernmental Committee for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage, the folk holiday “Surva” was inscribed in the Representative List of Intangible Cultural Heritage of UNESCO. The inclusion of this element in the Representative List of UNESCO is of great importance, since it consists of all those forms of expression that bear witness to the diversity of intangible cultural heritage on the Bulgarian lands and in the cross-border region.