COTABATO CITY: The Bureau on Cultural Heritage (BCH) of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) and the National Commission on Culture and the Arts (NCCA) are implementing a cultural mapping project for Muslim communities. Fr. Harold Rentoria, Order of Saint Augustine (OSA), NCCA Commissioner for Cultural Heritage, described cultural mapping as a process of course identifying, recording, and using cultural resources and activities in building communities. “Culture is just like the soul of the nation. Everything emanates from our culture; this is why we would like to preserve it for our identity as people of the ARMM, and as Filipinos.
That is why we devise a system so that we will be able to pass on to our children what we have in the past, that still exist in the present, that they can use in the future,” Rentoria said. NCCA is the planning and policy making body of the government on the preservation and protection of culture. Meanwhile, Executive Director Marites Maguindra of the BCH-ARMM expressed optimism on the region’s renewed ties with the NCCA. This is not the first time the two agencies worked together, but Maguindra said stronger ties with the NCCA is very beneficial for the ARMM since BCH has limitations in resources. “We are apprehensive in 10 years time if we fail to preserve not only the valuable items, including the transfer of skills, this heritage might get lost,” she stressed.