Pennsylvania Moves Forward

The Conservation Center for Art & Historic Artifacts (CCAHA), which was represented at the Philadelphia forum, has been awarded $189,000 by the Institute of Museum and Library Services to lead the Pennsylvania Cultural Resilience Network (PACRN), a two-year project to develop, coordinate, and consolidate statewide efforts to address disaster preparedness and response needs at museums and historic sites through new programs and resources. Components of the PACRN initiative include: emergency planning, response, and recovery training for museums and historic sites; the establishment of a trained response team to provide triage assistance when emergencies occur; expanded online emergency resources; and the development of an Annex concerning protocols at collecting institutions to be added to the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency’s statewide response and recovery plans. Click here for more information.

Another cool Pennsylvania initiative is Pennsylvania’s Top Ten Endangered Artifacts. This campaign highlights the cultural significance of our nation’s valuable and vulnerable heritage held in trust in Pennsylvania’s museums, libraries, archives, and historic sites. Check out the Top Ten here and vote for your favorite artifact (and even consider a financial contribution). Anyone can vote, whether or not you’re a Pennsylvanian.

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First Forum A Success

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Last week we held our first forum in Philadelphia, where state cultural stewards and their respective state emergency managers met, many for the first time. Participants seemed to embrace the more informal design of the forum, which resulted in lively and enlightening discussion. Participants were asked what the best part of their forum experience was, and here are some of their responses:

“Just talking and listening to others and gaining knowledge from their experiences. And that I was not alone…we all have funding and personnel shortages, but are still moving forward with disaster planning.”

“Group discussions and exercises. During these sessions we identified we are more alike than different. We were able to see steps to improve supporting the whole community.”

“Getting to know emergency management better – both their lingo and structures and their people.”

“Everything, but mostly the network that was built thanks to the way the workshop was designed. The constant change from group to group makes you aware of really who are the people around you.”

“Working with my state partners, as we were able to begin discussing plans for moving forward. Also, hearing about other state models was interesting; the entire scope of these collaborations was new to me.”