VIDA goes on­line

Malta Independent - - LIFESTYLE & CULTURE -

Fol­low­ing the suc­cess of its first two sym­posia ‘The Ze­j­tun Ro­man Villa’ (2012) and ‘The Last Turk­ish Raid of 1614 (2014), Wirt iż-Że­j­tun has an­nounced its third sym­po­sium ‘Dis­cov­er­ing South­east Malta’.

This re­gion, which en­com­passes the largest har­bour in the south, a beau­ti­ful coast­line with its own ecosys­tems and at­ten­dant in­dus­tries, such as fish­ing and salt ex­trac­tion, as well as nu­mer­ous sites of ar­chae­o­log­i­cal, his­tor­i­cal and re­li­gious im­por­tance, de­serves to be given much more at­ten­tion than it has re­ceived up till now.

There is gen­eral con­sen­sus that much needs to be done for ex­am­ple, in terms of con­ser­va­tion and preser­va­tion of the many his­tor­i­cal sites, which are lit­tle by lit­tle dis­ap­pear­ing. As tourists go, it is only Għar Dalam and Marsaxlokk, as a typ­i­cal fish­ing vil­lage which are pro­moted as tourist des­ti­na­tions. Which is a pity, as the South­east has so much more to of­fer! How can this re­gion be de­vel­oped in a sus­tain­able way, so that the ru­ral and nat­u­ral en­vi­ron­ment, the pos­si­ble at­ten­dant eco­nomic de­vel­op­ment and the in­her­ent cul­tural her­itage co­ex­ist har­mo­niously?

In or­der to ini­ti­ate a dis­cus­sion, Wirt iż-Że­j­tun has in­vited var­i­ous speak­ers from dif­fer­ent en­ti­ties to present their re­search on dif­fer­ent as­pects of this topic. Ar­chi­tect Ruben Abela, Pres­i­dent of Wirt iż-Że­j­tun, will trace the mil­i­tary his­tory of the re­gion through the ex­ist­ing mil­i­tary struc­tures, very few of which un­for­tu­nately, have been re­stored or adapted for fur­ther use. Ms. Michelle Borg from the Plan­ning Author­ity will pro­pose that an aware­ness of the com­plex­i­ties of coastal sys­tems can fa­cil­i­tate the cre­ation of al­ter­na­tive so­lu­tions to coastal use, which so­lu­tions would then safe­guard ecosys­tems and at the same time em­power lo­cal com­mu­ni­ties to­wards the sus­tain­able use of the coast.

The Se­nior Cu­ra­tor of the Na­tional Mu­seum of Ar­chae­ol­ogy, Sharon Sul­tana, will ex­plore var­i­ous types of ma­te­rial ev­i­dence that can be found in the Na­tional Mu­seum of Ar­chae­ol­ogy and ex­plain how cer­tain his­tor­i­cal sites can be re­searched and re­con­structed up to a cer­tain ex­tent through this ma­te­rial ev­i­dence. Dr. Nadia Theuma, an es­tab­lished re­searcher in the fields of tourism, cul­tural de­vel­op­ment and re­gional brand­ing, will in turn, look at the ru­ral and agri­cul­tural her­itage of the re­gion and an­a­lyse its in­her­ent po­ten­tial as a tourist des­ti­na­tion, as well as ad­dress the so­cio-eco­nomic im­pact that such ac­tiv­ity would have on the re­gion and its com­mu­ni­ties.

This idea is fur­ther de­vel­oped by dif­fer­ent speak­ers. The his­tor­i­cal so­ci­ol­o­gist Comm. Dr. Ge­orge Cas­sar will dis­cuss the pos­si­bil­ity of the de­vel­op­ment of re­li­gious tourism in the South­east re­gion, whereas in a joint pa­per, Dr. Ja­son Bon­nici and Ar­chi­tect Ruben Abela will pro­pose the cre­ation of a Na­tional Geo Park for the South­east re­gion, which will of­fer vis­i­tors the op­por­tu­nity to ex­pe­ri­ence what the re­gion has to of­fer in terms of culture, his­tory and her­itage. Ar­chi­tects Daphne Fenech and Katya Sam­mut will dis­cuss their pro­posal for the cre­ation of a her­itage park which would un­lock the cul­tural her­itage po­ten­tial of the South­east re­gion, as well as en­sur­ing the con­ser­va­tion and safe­keep­ing of im­por­tant sites. Such a project would also con­trib­ute to the cre­ation of off­shoot economies as well as strengthen al­ready ex­ist­ing com­mer­cial in­vest­ments. Mr. Alex Mus­cat from the Of­fice of the Prime Min­is­ter will give a pre­sen­ta­tion about l-In­wadar Na­tional Park, a gov­ern­ment project aimed at safe­guard­ing the nat­u­ral en­vi­ron­ment and giving peo­ple an open area to en­joy.

The fi­nal word will be given to Ms. Tracey Ann Vella Cumbo, Wirt iż-Że­j­tun sec­re­tary and a grad­u­ate in Ar­chae­ol­ogy and Cul­tural Her­itage Man­age­ment, who will pro­pose a num­ber of mea­sures that can be in­tro­duced to gen­er­ate so­cial, cul­tural and eco­nomic ben­e­fits for the re­gion so as to cre­ate a sus­tain­able mar­ket to put the South­east re­gion on the vis­i­tors’ map.

The sym­po­sium is open to the gen­eral pub­lic and any­one in­ter­ested in at­tend­ing, is kindly asked to reg­is­ter by send­ing an email to Wirt iż-Że­j­tun on wirtizze­j­tun@gmail.com. The event will start at 8.30am on Satur­day 8th Oc­to­ber and will be held at Villa Sant’Anna, Triq il-Qaliet, Marsaskala. Wirt iż-Że­j­tun looks for­ward to wel­com­ing all those who are in­ter­ested in safe­guard­ing the her­itage of the South­east re­gion, be­fore it is ir­re­triev­ably lost. VIDA has been pub­lish­ing its mag­a­zine ev­ery first Sun­day of the month for 82 is­sues now and in the past few months, it has made great ef­forts to branch out into new ter­ri­tory and take over the world of so­cial me­dia. The VIDA team has seen the po­ten­tial in the type of con­tent that a life­style driven mag­a­zine could pro­duce on dif­fer­ent plat­forms. For the past three months, VIDA has taken on a whole new life on­line, thanks to fresh ma­te­rial be­ing posted on a daily ba­sis, rang­ing from gen­er­ated ar­ti­cles to re­lat­able quotes and lots of com­pe­ti­tions.

VIDA keeps track of special days through­out the year to let you know of the cra­zi­est cel­e­bra­tions that are tak­ing place glob­ally. It cov­ers all mat­ters con­cern­ing travel, cur­rent mat­ters, food, beauty and so on. It even gave the op­por­tu­nity for two lucky win­ners to ex­pe­ri­ence the craze of the sum­mer, Din­ner in the Sky, via a face­book com­pe­ti­tion that gave out a to­tal of 4 tick­ets to­gether with ex­clu­sive bot­tles of Veuve Clic­quot cham­pagne to run­ner ups.

If you want dif­fer­ent, new and en­ter­tain­ing con­tent to fea­ture on your feed, like the VIDA page on Face­book or fol­low us on twit­ter @VIDA_Magazine. We prom­ise to make your days a lit­tle more in­ter­est­ing.

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