Inauguration ceremony of the project “From Shepherd to Artisan – Revitalizing Wool Processing in Albania”
The inauguration ceremony of the project “From Shepherd to Artisan – Revitalizing Wool Processing in Albania” was organized by CHwB under the auspices of Mr. Holger Tausch Chargé d’Affaires and Director of Cooperation at the Embassy of Switzerland.
Among those present during the ceremony held in Gjirokastra were representatives of local authorities, the Regional Tourist Office, the Regional Directorate of Vocational Education and Training, cultural heritage experts, the working group of the Swiss Embassy, artisans and the mayors of Lunxheria and Antigonea, communes which are also part of the group involved in the project.
During his greeting speech, Mr. Holger Tausch affirmed his strong support, saying, among other remarks, “I express great gratitude and appreciation for the importance of the city of Gjirokastra as a part of world cultural heritage. I thank the foundation Cultural Heritage without Borders for what has been achieved so far with the project. I value like a golden chain the inclusiveness that characterizes this project, which enables the creation of cooperative links among shepherds, artisans, design experts and the market – for maintaining and developing the tradition of processing wool products. In the future, the Embassy of Switzerland and the Swiss Cooperation Office will have a greater involvement in concrete projects for the city of Gjirokastra.”
The project “From Shepherd to Artisan – Revitalizing Wool Processing in Albania” promotes the preservation of cultural heritage and economic development in the region of Gjirokastra through the production of woven and felt craft products.
These products will be produced entirely in an artisanal way, a process which involves techniques for processing the wool, coloring it with natural dyes obtained from plants, spinning it by hand and using traditional motifs from the area.
The project is also an important stimulus for revitalizing wool processing in the area of Gjirokastra. Besides training artisans with new techniques on working with handloom and felt, residents from Antigonea and Lunxheria communes are supported financially while being engaged in the processing of wool within the project.
The project is implemented by Cultural Heritage without Borders in Gjirokastra and is financially supported by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation and the International Center for Migration and Development (CIM).