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
 
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Nairobi Declaration on
Children in African Museums


We, Participants, gathered in Nairobi at the National Museums of Kenya, on the occasion of the Workshop on Children in African Museums: The Undiscovered Audience, organized by the Commonwealth Association of Museums (CAM) with the financial assistance of The Commonwealth Foundation, The A.G. Leventis Foundation, the Rockefeller Foundation and others noted below,

In order to launch a programme on the educational and cultural development of African children by addressing the needs of Children in African museums and to establish a Group for Children in African Museums (GCAM), make the following recommendations:

  1. PRINCIPLES:
    1. Museums should be Children-Friendly
    2. There should be free entry to Museums, Monuments and Sites for children at all levels
    3. Children should be involved in the planning and organization of children's programmes
    4. Family and community groups at all relevant levels should participate in museum children's programmes
    5. All museum staff, Directors included, should be involved and committed to children's programmes
    6. Mission statements should be developed for museum Education Departments, museums as institutions and professional organizations that include an emphasis on the needs of children
    7. Children should be given a voice in the museum
  2. ORGANIZATION:
    1. An organization known as the Group for Children in African Museums (GCAM) will be established to initiate, link, support and monitor children's programmes in African Museums
    2. To enable GCAM to function effectively, CAM will support the establishment of National and Regional Museum Associations in Africa, especially in East Africa
    3. Planning of museum education and children's programmes should be closely linked to the interests and needs of children, and to national calendars of events and school curricula
    4. All museums should set aside specific budgets for children's programmes and projects in their educational programme budgets
  3. PROJECTS:
    1. The establishment of children's museums in each country will be encouraged.
    2. Children's activities will be encouraged through the establishment of children's corners, libraries and museum clubs.
    3. Museums must reach out to children through providing Mobile museums, kits, packages and promoting them by information through the media.
    4. Training and exchange for both museum and education officers and other partners in children's programmes will be encouraged and implemented.
    5. GCAM will encourage the exchange of children's programmes among African museums.
    6. Children's programmes should emphasize both contemporary issues and traditional living cultures in positive and interactive ways.
    7. Networks will be established between museums, schools and communities for the benefit of the child.

In pursuit of this Vision and these objectives, we call on all Commonwealth African countries, other nations and international organizations and agencies to join CAM in the implementation of the Group for Children in African Museums, the GCAM initiative, and;

We therefore invite the Secretary General of the Commonwealth, the Director General of UNESCO and other international humanitarian and development organizations to assist and work with the Commonwealth Association of Museums in the realization of GCAM, its objectives and its programmes.

Declared and adopted unanimously on November 15, 1997 in Nairobi, Kenya.

Emmanuel N. Arinze
President of CAM
Nigeria

Lois Irvine
Secretary General of CAM
Canada

Signed on behalf of:
Khanyile Jezi, South Africa
Nakiso Mani Kubanji, Botswana
Licina Shayo, Tanzania
Doreen Nteta, Botswana
Baba Ceesay, The Gambia
P. Kofi Kpikpitse, Ghana
Carole Mary Mahoney, United Kingdom
Gifty Addobea Offei, Ghana
Robert Hall, United States of America
Joe D. K. Nkrumah, Ghana
Charity Mwape Namukoko, Zambia
Michael Gondwe, Malawi
Rufaro Mahonde, Zimbabwe
Alda Costa, Mozambique
George Abungu, Kenya
Willa Le Roux, Namibia
Ali Baakabe, Kenya
Gloria Chianu Chuma-Ibe, Nigeria
Omar Bwana, Kenya
Umebe Onyejekwa, Nigeria
Fatma Ali Busaidy, Kenya
Dorothy Elewachi Wama, Nigeria
Jane Chebitwey, Kenya
Graham Andrew Dominy, South Africa
Musa Kipchoge Chesire, Kenya
Abubaker Mohamed Ali El-Amudy, Kenya
Clement Mwaura, Kenya
Hassan Mohamed Hassan, Kenya
Lydia Mumbi Muchira, Kenya
Alufas Odanga Imbahale, Kenya
Ayub Macharia Ndaruga, Kenya
Nancy Kiprop, Kenya
James Kahiu Ngugi, Kenya
James Maikweki, Kenya
Andrew Robert Njuguna, Kenya
Fredrick Karanja Mirara, Kenya
Millen Noni, Kenya
George Kiboi Mitios, Kenya
Ibrahim Omare, Kenya
Amina Said Mdahoma Mohamed, Kenya
Jacqueline Wambua, Kenya

In addition to the major funding agencies, The Commonwealth Foundation, The A.G. Leventis Foundation and The Rockefeller Foundation, participation of the delegates in the workshop was made possible with the assistance of:

National Museums of Kenya
ICCROM-PREMA, Italy
Museums and Galleries Commission, UK
Victoria and Albert Museum, UK
Anacostia Museum, Smithsonian Institution, USA
Conservation International, USA
International Center, OFfice of International Relations, Smithsonian Institution, USA
Shell Nigeria
The Commonwealth Fund for Technical Co-operation, UK
Canadian Museums Association
Museums Alberta, Canada
Ghana Museums and Monuments Board
The British Council, Tanzania
Mpumalanga Provincial Government, South Africa
South African Museums Association
and individuals and museums