The world’s cultural heritage is like a big puzzle Each monument, each object, is an irreplaceable part of the overall picture which gives us insight into our origins, our development and our lives today It helps us to understand and appreciate other cultures Each discovery, each new interpretation addsto the puzzle and makesthe picture clearer We must ensure the protection of every single piece today, so that future generations may have the Opportunities to enjoy the puzzle.
Many people are not aware that our cultural heritage is under stress from natural disasters such as earthquakes and floods, and from sI0wer acting processes such as pollution or human actionst Even the most innocent gestures such as collecting ancient pieces of pottery or mosaics as souvenirs have a destructive impact if repeated by thousands Touching an Object of stone, metal or textile leavestraces of grease, acid or meat on its surface Climbing a monument wears down the structure underneath and can dismantle it Writing 0r engraving names inflicts permanent damage Strolling around narrow crowded places with bulky bags or backpacks might knock over an object or scratch a mural painting and ruin it There are countless ways in which one can unknowingly contribute to the destruction of cultural heritage .
In 2020 there will be 16 billion visitors per year worldwide Let us raise awareness of this issue so that we may join together to protect and enjoy the diversity and rich ness Of our cultural heritage
International Organization for Conservation of
Cultural Heritage (ICCROM)