Two men carving out canoes

CPF funded project led by University of St Andrews

Life cycle





University of St Andrews, University of Dar es Salaam 


To help protect two coastal heritage sites by building in-country capacity to record heritage data and encourage wider participation.


Projected climate changes in the western Indian Ocean are predicted to have a direct impact on the low-lying coastal communities. Specific climate impacts include an increase in sea levels, increase in severity and frequency of storms and changes in the ecosystem. All these threats put the Kilwa Kisawini and Bagamoyo coastal heritage sites at risk, which also impacts the intangible heritage of the local communities.


The focus of this project was to document the heritage as it is now, establishing baseline data which supports the future protection of the sites and creates records of intangible heritage (such as stories and songs) so that they are not lost. Alongside the documentation, the project developed a database and an app that local professionals and communities can use to record the heritage and monitor climate effects. 

The aim is to increase awareness and engagement with cultural heritage so that local organisations and communities have increased capacity and resilience to care for and protect this cultural heritage.


The database has been adopted by the Department of Antiquities and National Museums of Tanzania, whilst the app generated more than 150 new database entries including records of sites, buildings, objects, stories and landscapes.

Training was provided for 36 people including heritage professionals, ministry staff and local community volunteers in the use of the app and in collecting and documenting heritage.

A four-day event was successfully held in Bagamoyo where over 1000 people attended. The project produced a music video with young musicians in Tanzania, aimed at increasing awareness of the climate change-related threats to heritage. The video has already received hundreds of YouTube views.

Mutual benefit

The Cultural Protection Fund (CPF) promotes a people-centred approach to Cultural Protection. It encourages partnerships at an institutional level by using our global network and cultural relations approach. Half of CPF projects are led by UK organisations, encouraging international knowledge exchange on common issues, best-practice sharing and influence on heritage protection processes and policies worldwide. The CPF is connected to a wider network of heritage protection funders and agencies, feeding into and benefitting from a wide range of research and intelligence on heritage protection. Heritage protection is a global, shared challenge and the learning and evaluation from CPF projects is fed back into a network to create better conditions for heritage protection and increased understanding of its positive impact on individuals and societies.