A LEADING international expert on preservation and restoration of heritage sites visited the Philippines on May 13 to discuss the restoration of sites damaged by the onslaught of Typhoon Yolanda in November last year.
Dr. Stefano de Caro, director general of the International Center for the Study of the Preservation and Restoration of Cultural Property (ICCROM), paid a courtesy call to Department of Foreign Affairs Undersecretary for Special and Ocean Concerns Rafael Seguis.
De Caro was with National Commission on Culture and the Arts (NCCA) chairperson Felipe de Leon during the courtesy call. NCCA is hosting De Caro’s visit to the country from May 12 to 18.
Aside from the damaged sites in areas devastated by Typhoon Yolanda, de Caro is also interested in helping the Philippines restore those damaged by the earthquake in Bohol last year.
Some of the sites damaged by the Bohol earthquake were centuries-old churches.
Seguis conveyed the Philippines’ “utmost appreciation” for ICCROM’s assistance in the aftermath of such calamities.
Before the visit, a team comprised of specialists from ICCROM, NCCA, United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (Unesco) and International Council on Monuments and Sites (Icomos) went to Manila and Central Visayas from December 2 to 12 last year “to assess the situation and damage caused by the natural disasters, identify immediate needs and emergency safeguarding measures, as well as medium-term interventions needed for rehabilitation and recovery.”