Cross Culture Foundation of Uganda Launches Cultural Exhibition Towards International Museum Day.

Cross Culture Foundation of Uganda Launches Cultural Exhibition Towards International Museum Day.

The cross cultural foundation of Uganda has taken into consideration to recognize the international museum day by hosting a culture exhibition in Uganda at the National Theatre.

This year's international museum day runs under the theme, “Museums, Education and Research”, with a general free entrance to the public.

It should be remembered that since 1977, the International Museum Day is commemorated on 18th May to provide an opportunity for museum professionals to alert the general public about the importance of museums and the challenges they face.

On Wednesday in Kampala, the occasion was presided over by the woman member of Parliament for Bugweri district, Hon. Racheal Magoola as a Chief guest.  

Magoola mentioned that museums are making an effort to link our past and future through their collections, which are accessible to schools, researchers, residents and foreign visitors, during a press conference.

“Community museums are also playing an important role in preserving and presenting the diversity of Uganda's cultural heritage and provide spaces for appreciating different cultures. They are cultural repositories, some with well-documented literature on culture and other socio-anthropological aspects.” She said 

Commenting on the challenges facing community museums in Uganda In spite of their contribution, the chief guest described that community museums are still perceived by a large section of Ugandans as representing a largely irrelevant past and their role as quite marginal to the current national and local priorities, as such, they are rarely given visibility and are rarely visited or supported. 

According to Magoola, “The government of Uganda is not sufficiently aware of their existence and does not support them. Tour operators give attention to animal tourism and ignore the human dimension of tourism, which is manifested in community museums.” 

The capacity of museum caretakers to efficiently and professionally manage community museums is still wanting. They lack opportunities and spaces for networking both at national and international levels and they are not sufficiently visible.Integrating modern Communication technologies in museum management is still a major challenge,she added.

Other challenges facing community museums include uncertainty about their sustainability beyond founding personalities, limited research and innovation and limited risk management and mitigation especially, against disasters or pandemics. 

Speaking on the importance of the Museums, she explained that museums help to preserve the world’s culture and history. Their role of collecting objects and materials of cultural and historical importance helps us to better understand our heritage and provide links to the past.

“Community museums commemorate the International Museums Day through an exhibition

As a pre-event to the International Museum Day 2024, The Cross-Cultural Foundation of Uganda

(CCFU) has supported 25 of Uganda’s community museums to join the rest of the museums in the 

world to commemorate the International Museums’ Day through an exhibition that is taking place at the Uganda National Cultural Centre (UNCC) in Kampala 2024.” 

Whereas the national events by the Government of Uganda will be held in Soroti City on 18th May 2024, Ugandans will have the opportunity to visit community museums that will be exhibiting in Kampala for the two days, from 15th to 16th May, she noted.

The rationale for this event is to create awareness among Ugandans about the importance of community museums and the role they play in promoting our diverse cultural heritage.

 Magoola, however, appealed to various stakeholders to support community museums as centers for research and heritage education and as centers for cultural rights, expressions, enjoyment and access. The government should increase funding to the culture and tourism sectors to support museums as potential cultural tourism resources. The museums have the potential to employ several Ugandans.

The tour operators should include visits to community museums in the packages they develop and offer to tourists a tourist traveling to Bwindi Forest in Kanungu should be able to visit community museums such as Buddu Cultural Museum in Masaka, Igongo Cultural Centre and Museum in Mbarara, the Great Lakes in Museum in Ntungamo, and so many others.

The policymakers, media actors and CSOs should embrace and support our cultures. If the policy makers and planners right from the district level up to the national level, do not plan for our culture, then who will, she asked, among others.