The ICH NGO Forum(www.ichngoforum.org) is the platform for communication, networking, exchange and cooperation for NGOs accredited by UNESCO to provide advisory services to the Intergovernmental Committee in the framework of the 2003 UNESCO Convention for the safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage. It appointed the editorial group from the working group on methodologies and experiences from the Field, to share relevant information among NGOs in the world, more regularly. As a result, #Heritage Alive was created and as a one of boards, ICCN will present you an article from heritage alive, in this section.

The Cross-Cultural Foundation of Uganda (CCFU)


From elders to young people learning traditional dances at Mother Thereza School, Adjumani, Uganda

CCFU is a non-governmental organisation established in 2005 on the premise that culture is not sufficiently taken into account in development work and that, as a result, many development initiatives are not sustained because they tend to depend on external thinking and resources. CCFU exists to promote the recognition of culture as vital for human development that responds to our national identity and diversity, through the following objectives:

  • a) To promote culture as a resource for development thinking and practice through research, documentation and training
  • b) To promote and preserve cultural heritage through support to community initiatives and education.
  • c) To enhance an appreciation of cultural diversity and identity as a source of knowledge and social cohesion.

CCFU is an accredited NGO to the UNESCO Inter-governmental Committee for the Safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage and is a member of the International National Trust Organisation (INTO).

Year of accreditation: 2012
Main Domain(s): (a) oral traditions and expressions, including language as a vehicle of the intangible cultural heritage;
(c) social practices, rituals and festive events; 
(d) knowledge and practices concerning nature and the universe.
Main Safeguarding measures: a) identification, documentation, research (including inventory-making); c) promotion, enhancement; d) transmission, (non-) formal education; f) Others – Traditional knowledge and practice in relation to development and good governance

a) The Foundation has documented Uganda’s intangible cultural heritage in a number of areas. CCFU has published case studies that explore culture in relation to Governance, Cultural Institutions, Languages, HIV/AIDS, Education, Gender, Social Protection, Herbal Medicine and Economic relevance. Our publications can be accessed on-line.


Drawing on Culture to fight HIV

b) CCFU works to promote the cultural rights of all communities, especially those of indigenous minority groups. It recently supported their efforts to preserve and promote their orthography and creative literature, resulting in “Speaking out!”, a publication which present a rich mix of creative contributions from 13 different minority groups (click here)

c) CCFU supports more than 80 cultural heritage clubs in Uganda’s secondary schools through the Heritage Education Programme. Out of the classroom, young people learn about their culture and heritage. Schools are linked to community museums as points of reference on cultural heritage and through CCFU’s work with the National Curriculum Development Centre, culture has been incorporated in the new secondary schools curriculum to be rolled out in 2017.

CCFU also delivers an intensive training cycle which provides knowledge on cultural concepts and approaches, and tests culture-specific field tools and cultural analysis frameworks. A “Culture in Development” training guide for development practitioners has been developed to this effect.

f) In line with CCFU’s objective to promote cultural rights, governance and managing diversity, CCFU has been involved in examining and documenting the relevance of traditional cultural governance systems in development processes. Many of these involve interactions with Cultural Leaders. These interactions included facilitating the development of a Uganda clan leaders’ charter, inter-cultural dialogues in the Rwenzori region and a a statement by the nation’s cultural leaders on their aspirations and expectations in the coming 5 years.

Main countries where the NGO works : Uganda
Local, national or international level of the NGO : National


Cultural leaders launching the Cultural Institutions’ Statement
On their expectations and aspirations for the period 2016-2020