From Palmyra to the Old Town of Sana’a:

A Perspective from the Youth

Dedicated to promoting the role of young people in the protection of heritage in the Middle East, this project includes the realization of an informative and aesthetic publication that illustrates the ties between youth and heritage through a series of illustrations and testimonies from Lebanon, Palestine, Jordan, Syria, Iraq, Libya, and Yemen.

A multilingual publication

This project includes the production of a collective publication on emblematic sites of the Middle Eastern region (Lebanon, Jordan, Palestine, Syria, Iraq, Libya, Yemen). It aims at being both informative and aesthetic: it presents a series of testimonies from young people living in the Middle East on their heritage, accompanied by original illustrations by an artist.

Following the Observatory’s line, with its bilingual publications and its strong presence in the Middle East, this publication is multilingual, between Arabic, English, and French.

Testimonies by the local youth

The chore of the publication is composed of testimonies by young people, aged between 18 and 35 years old, living in various Middle Eastern countries, who tell us their feelings and opinions on their cultural heritage. The Observatory has a strong presence in the region, thanks to its network of local observers: they form the precious connections to local communities.

By giving voice directly to young people, by allowing them to share their feelings and anecdotes on heritage, it is basically allowing them to free their words and to inscribe this heritage at the very heart of their personal history and their everyday life. The heritage then no longer becomes an external element in their lives, it becomes an integral and constitutive part of their history, thus creating a stronger sense of attachment.

My attachment to my heritage makes me feel how important my presence is in this life.My heritage means a lot to me, it is my safe haven, when I am feeling frustrated or hopeless, it is also my starting point and my driving force”

Ayoub, 28 years old, Yemen

Awareness-raising campaign

This publication will be followed by an awareness-raising campaign promoting heritage preservation among young people on social media platforms through a number of videos.

It aims at raising awareness of the value of heritage in civil society, develop a stronger sense of belonging among young people with respect to their heritage, disseminate knowledge of the region’s historical sites, which are too often unknown, and to enable approaching heritage from an aesthetic point of view.

Read the publication:

This publication was produced with the support of UNESCO under the framework of the UNESCO/UNOCT project on the Prevention of Violent Extremism (PVE) through Youth Empowerment in Jordan, Libya, Morocco, and Tunisia, co-funded by Canada.