PONT | Prespa Ohrid Nature Trust
Since 2021, our team participates in the European ERASMUS+ project 'HERO - Heritage Restoration for Inclusion Opportunities', together with other European teams: the Acta Vista (France, leader partner) , Bao Formation (France), Pour la Solidarite (Belgium), 4Grada Dragodid (Croatia).
This project attempts to link the implementation of architectural heritage restoration projects with professional training in heritage building crafts, the inclusion of vulnerable* social groups and the adoption of practices with a reduced environmental footprint.
In the first stage of the project, we developed a publication with examples of different groups from European and Mediterranean countries that are involved in a range of activities, as mentioned above, developing and implementing educational projects. This publication is a tool to raise awareness on how technical education through heritage restoration projects can be a field of opportunities for social and professional integration, and how environmentally friendly practices can be adopted.
In the next stages of the project, the participating teams are working together to develop two (2) training handbooks addressed to people who are actively trainers in either restoration projects, or activities on heritage conservation.
The training tools will include:
a pedagogical approach, with theoretical and practical tools for the transmission of technical knowledge and in particular for the inclusion of people from vulnerable social groups; and
technical tools for professional training in historical building techniques that highlight their environmental dimensions, while incorporating solutions to reduce the environmental footprint of a restoration project
In the framework of the project, several activities on communication and knowledge exchange have already taken place and are being further launched with craftspeople and trainees in France, Greece, Croatia and Belgium.
*The term vulnerable or specific social groups refers to people who are found in a disadvantaged position in their integration into the labour market for economic, social and cultural reasons, e.g. unemployed young people, long-term unemployed persons, people with limited professional or educational choices, who may be located in remote areas, etc., but also to other forms of social exclusion in general.