First Aid to Cultural Heritage in Times of Crisis

First Aid to Cultural Heritage in Times of Crisis billboard image

Initiated in 2009, ICCROM’s ‘First Aid in Times of Conflict’ (FAC) course ran successfully for three installments and focused specifically on training international cultural heritage professionals who work in areas prone to conflicts and need training in critical competencies to take action. After partnering with the Smithsonian and the Prince Claus Fund, the course was re-developed in 2015 with a newly expanded aim of ensuring that the heritage caretakers within any type of crisis-affected community have the ability to participate in their own cultural recovery, which in turn can become a driver for peace and holistic development. This revamped course was hosted first by the Netherlands National Commission for UNESCO in 2015 and by the Smithsonian Institution in 2016. In total, the FAC courses have created a growing network of nearly 100 professionals and have led to 27 additional regional trainings in 21 risk-prone countries. 

The 2018 FAC has been announced!

The next FAC course will take place in the Netherlands from July 31-August 24, 2018. Click here for more information and application criteria.

Are you a domestic heritage professional who wants to learn more about improving your organization’s capacity to prepare for and respond to a disaster involving heritage in the U.S.? Check out SCRI’s Heritage Emergency and Response Training program, known as HEART.

2016 First Aid to Cultural Heritage in Times of Crisis

The first time a FAC course was held in the U.S., FAC brought 21 participants from 18 different countries to the Smithsonian in June 2016. Watch the course video produced by our colleagues at the Office of International Relations.

2015 First Aid to Cultural Heritage in Times of Crisis

In honor of the 60th anniversary of the Hague Convention, an inaugural partnership of The Netherlands National Commission for UNESCO, the International Centre for the Study of the Preservation and Restoration of Cultural Property (ICCROM), and the Smithsonian Institution led to an expanded and redeveloped course. Watch the final simulation exercise of the First Aid to Cultural Heritage in Times of Crisis (FAC) training course held in the Netherlands in April 2015.

FAC Resources

Click the links below to learn more about the FAC framework, guiding principles, as well as other educational resources for heritage professionals dealing with disaster preparedness.

FAC Guiding Principles




For more disaster preparedness resources, check out our general Resources page.