UNESCO Director Vowed to Rebuild Ukraine’s Culture Sector

UNESCO Director Audrey Azoulay Pledged to Use $10 Million for Rebuilding Ukraine’s War-Affected and Destroyed Culture Sector.

Apr 7, 2023By Angela Davic, News, Discoveries, In-depth Reporting, and Analysis
UNESCO director
Azoulay inside the Chernihiv Regional Youth Center ©UNESCO/Dmytro Kuyznietsov


UNESCO director visited some cities in Ukraine and also decided to help Ukraine, in rebuilding its cultural heritage. Overall, she decided to donate $10 million for rebuilding previously war-affected areas. She visited Kyiv, Chernihiv, and Odesa with the Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy. UNESCO also released a statement on this event.


UNESCO Director Vows to $10 M, but Report Says $6.9 Million

UNESCO director
©UNESCO/Dmytro Kuyznietsov


After visiting Ukraine, UNESCO released a statement saying: “the organization’s support to the population [as well as] to advance the reconstruction of the country’s cultural sector”. The entire organization recognized the significant renewal of Ukrainian artistic assets. The latest UNESCO report still says $6.9 million for cultural restoration, although the director announced $10 million.

UNESCO’s plan for the restoration of Ukrainian culture includes price projections for long-term and short-term needs. Overall, short-term needs ($2.3 billion) are for the next three years – from 2023 to 2026. When it comes to mid and long term needs, they go far in 2033 and will cost $4.6 billion. This is total of  $6.9 billion.


The Arch of Freedomn
The Arch of Freedom, with boxed-up sculpture beneath it.


“The early stage is expected to include damage assessment and documentation, emergency measures for cultural immovable and movable properties. Also, stabilization and conservation measures for cultural assets, storage management, preparedness plans, and immediate conservation to prevent further loss and looting”, the document reads.


What Is Included in the UNESCO Reconstruction Plan?

©UNESCO/Dmytro Kuyznietsov

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UNESCO’s document will also follow international standards and all protocols for the preservation of cultural property. It also includes a thorough digital architecture for managing and documenting cultural property. On Twitter, Azoulay shared the organization was currently “mobilizing more than $10m to strengthen its response to the education emergency in Ukraine”.


In addition to the restoration of culture, the funds will be used for the education of architects, conservators, and urban planners. UNESCO will provide special assistance to the city of Chernihiv and with the help of the locals, restore this important historical center for the country. Since the Russian invasion started in February 2022, UNESCO maintained an ongoing list of the cultural sites that Russia harmed.


Street art in Ukraine


Odesa, a Ukrainian port city on the Black Sea, now features on UNESCO’s list of threatened World Heritage sites. This action provides Odesa possible international repercussions in addition to greater aid. It has historical and architectural treasures from around the world, such the Odesa Opera House. There are also he Odesa Museum of Modern Art and Odesa Museum of Fine Arts. The Odesa Museum of Fine Arts housed more than 12,000 works before the war.

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By Angela DavicNews, Discoveries, In-depth Reporting, and AnalysisAngela is a journalism student at the Faculty of Political Science in Belgrade and received a scholarship for continued education in Prague. She completed her internship at the daily newspaper DANAS and worked as an executive editor at Talas.