Documentation and conservation efforts for the Busanyin Shrine at the Osun Osogbo Sacred Grove launched in Osogbo on Thursday, courtesy of the United States Mission to Nigeria.
The U.S. Mission to Nigeria has a long history of supporting the protection and preservation of Nigerian cultural heritage through the Ambassador’s Fund for Cultural Preservation (AFCP).
The Mission’s implementing partner CyArk, a California-based non-profit, is leading the 3D documentation of the Busanyin Shrine, one of eight monuments within the Osun Osogbo Sacred Grove.
The U.S. Consul General Claire Pierangelo joined the Ataoja of Osogbo, Oba Jimoh Oyetunji Laroye, and officials of the National Commission for Museums and Monuments (NCMM) to mark the commencement of the cultural project.
Pierangelo explained that the AFCP project would provide an accurate record of the current conditions of the shrine to plan restoration work effectively.
She noted that one of the key components of the AFCP project is a capacity building program on digital documentation skills and cultural heritage management for curators and local officials responsible for managing the Osun Osogbo Sacred Grove monuments.
“The United States is a strong supporter of efforts to preserve Nigerian culture,” Pierangelo said. “We have funded over $770,000 for preservation projects across Nigeria through the AFCP in the last four years.”
Apart from the Busanyin Shrine project, additional AFCP projects include documentation and conservation of the 14th-century Sungbo Eredo earthworks of the Ijebu Kingdom; documentation of the Ifa oral traditions in Oyo State; rock art preservation project in Cross River and Jigawa states, among many others.
The U.S. Mission to Nigeria explores opportunities to support the preservation of Nigeria’s rich cultural heritage using the AFCP and other partnership mechanisms.
Applications for the AFCP 2022 Grants Program is open until December 5. Non-governmental organizations, museums, educational institutions, ministries of culture, or similar institutions and organizations are welcome to apply.