Mobile Museum Program of National Museum, Botswana at Ditshegwane Village (Study Tour visit, 1995) CAM workshop delegates in Guyana with the Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports, The Honourable Gail Texeira, 1999 Delegate display at GCAM workshop, Nairobi, 1997 Tswaing Crater, South Africa, 1995 Jennifer Wishart (left), Emmanuel Arinze, Jenny Daly at Museum of African Art, Georgetown, Guyana CAM delegates at the Tswaing Crater Interpretation Centre, South Africa, 1995 Children's dance troupe, Ditshegwane Village, 1995 Charity Namukoko Salasini, Zambia with child guest, GCAM workshop, Nairobi, 1997
Bulletin Number 6 - Feb. 2000
The President's Column
Museums, Peace, Democracy, and Governance in the 21st Century: Successful CAM Triennial and 25th Anniversary in Barbados
Guyana Report: Workshop on Museum Policy
Africom Report: Africom for the New Millennium
Internships Successful for CAM in 1998-1999, Two More Underway in 1999-2000
Internship Report by
Caroline Lanthier

Internship Report by
Jonathan Murphy

Distance Learning Programme
GCAM Column #3
What Does a Declaration
Mean to CAM?

Bridgetown Declaration
(Under 'Publications & Resources')

CAM Bulletin Number 6 - Feb. 2000

What Does a Declaration Mean to CAM?

For some years now, the Commonwealth Association of Museums has followed the pattern of a number of international conferences and meetings which adopt declarations at the conclusion of their sessions. In Barbados, the participants included a significant number of new faces and recent members as well as long time colleagues. It may help to understand the declaration if we say a word about the way in which CAM forms and uses declarations. Many such resolutions or conclusions do not seem to amount to anything other than to state some optimistic, soon-forgotten statements which are often not the result of comprehensive discussion and which call for no further action.

CAM's approach is to encourage sufficient discussion and building of shared knowledge to articulate a statement which will stand alone as an holistic expression of intent and also provide a sound base for future action.

In beginning to formulate these statements, called resolutions, recommendation, declarations etc. depending on both circumstance and tradition, some implicit principles have been used by CAM to proceed.

There are other external factors besides funds which prevent CAM from realizing specific plans or slow us in our progress toward the general principles and goals. For example, the discussion paper on the meaning of "indigenous" recommended in the 1994 Symposium in Victoria appears not to be an acceptable approach to clarifying issues relating to "First Nations". Much more effort is required to work together with indigenous peoples to provide support in effective and positive ways and determine future recommendations for CAM. Another factor is that CAM as an international organization can only offer assistance and suggest ways of doing so. It is necessary for those in individual nations to want to take up that offer and to take advantage of opportunities.

CAM does not wish to create declarations on individual issues without a larger framework of intent and without serious consideration and discussion of the topic. CAM does not wish to see declarations of so general a nature that there is no sense of responsibility for following up or no easy way of assessing whether there are concrete results. Above all, we see the declarations as inspirations to action, goals to enrich our professional commitment, and dreams to reach for.

Read the Bridgetown, Barbados Declaration