conservation image
 

From August 18 to September 4, 2008, the GCI held its sixth rock art workshop for provincial and national parks staff at Mapungubwe National Park, in conjunction with the Institute's Southern African Rock Art Project (SARAP). SARAP—a GCI collaboration with South African National Parks, the South African Heritage Resources Agency, and the Rock Art Research Institute of the University of Witwatersrand—is aimed at creating momentum for rock art preservation, conservation, accessibility, and management in one of the world's great repositories of rock art: the Southern Africa subcontinent. The region includes nations such as Tanzania, Zambia, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Botswana, and Namibia (see Conservation, vol. 21, no. 3).

The workshop's objectives included the creation of new visitation and management plans for rock art sites within the park and an upgrading of existing plans in preparation for an enlarged transfrontier park that encompasses adjacent areas in Botswana and Zimbabwe. The workshop was attended by twelve participants from South Africa, Zambia, Zimbabwe, and Botswana.

Since 2005 the GCI has been holding workshops through SARAP with the objectives of offering opportunities for capacity building to Southern African heritage professionals in rock art site management, conservation, interpretation, presentation, and specialized tourist guiding; strengthening contacts and creating a community of practice among rock art professionals in the region; creating training materials on rock art site management; and developing standardized methods for recording and monitoring rock art sites. Through these training activities, participants have also developed management plans and proposals for visitor interpretation and presentation for rock art sites at Mapungubwe National Park and Cederberg Wilderness Area, both World Heritage Sites in South Africa.

For further information on the Southern African Rock Art Project, visit the project Web site.