The kick-off meeting of the Coastal Heritage Network (CoHeN) Project, funded by the Interreg V-A Greece – Italy 2014-2020 Programme, took place on the 25th and 26th of February 2020 and was successfully completed. The meeting was hosted by the Ephorate of Antiquities of Ilia at the ‘SPAP’ exhibition and congress center in Ancient Olympia.
CoHeN, funded with a total budget of 6.420.600,00€, under Priority Axis 2, Integrated Environmental Management, is implemented under the leadership of the Ephorate of Antiquities of Aitoloakarnania and Lefkada on behalf of the Greek Ministry of Culture and Sports and the partnership consists of the Ephorate of Antiquities of Ilia, Thesprotia and Corfu in Greece and the Region of Puglia in Italy.
Mrs. Erofili – Iris Kollia, director of the Ephorate of Antiquities of Ilia, welcomed the representatives of all partners of the project. On behalf of the Joint Secretariat of the Interreg V-A Greece – Italy 2014-2020 Programme, Mr. Gianfranco Gadaleta, Joint Secretariat Coordinator and Mr. Francesco Cuddemi Project Officer, attended the meeting. They both welcomed all project beneficiaries and presented the methodology and the rules that all should follow in order to implement the project within its specific timetable.
On behalf of the Lead Beneficiary, responsible for the management and the overall project coordination, Mrs. Olympia Vikatou, director of the Ephorate of Antiquities of Aitoloakarnania and Lefkada, addressed the audience, while Mrs. Georma Fragoula, Tsantila Vassiliki and Katsouli Elena presented and analyzed the management toolkit as well as the reporting and internal monitoring tools and communication guidelines.
Puglia Region, being in charge of the communication strategy of the project, was represented by Mr. Roberto Ricco and Mr. Giovanni Antelmi, technical assistant, who presented the communication tools that will be applied in CoHeN project, highlighting the difficulties and challenges that all partners will face in the field of information dissemination. Mrs. Ralli Athanasia and Mrs. Kallinikou Pigi attended the meeting on behalf of the Ephorate of Antiquities of Ilia and presented in short the educational activities and the relevant deliverables of the project.
On behalf of the Ephorate of Antiquities of Thesprotia, responsible for the monitoring of the studies conducted during the project implementation, Mrs. Lazari Kassiani and Mrs. Anna Mina spoke briefly about the studies that each partner needs to carry out, drawing attention to adhering the timetable. Finally, the Ephorate of Antiquities of Corfu, represented by Mrs. Rigakou Diamanto, presented a brief overview of the field and infrastructure work that each partner will implement.
The meeting also attended Mrs. Kapota Katerina, Nikou Chrysa and Mitsi Penelope, representatives of the Programme Secretariat’s offices in Patras, Ioannina and Corfu respectively, as well as Mrs. Kotsanopoulou Vassiliki representing the NSRF Structure of the Ministry of Culture and Sports.
The meeting concluded with an in-depth discussion among all partners on common actions and interventions that will help the understanding of history and heritage significance of the selected monuments, as well as the creation and implementation of innovative management and promotion tools with the active engagement of local communities and stakeholders in both areas, not only to highlight several cultural heritage sites, but also to increase the attractiveness of the cross border cooperation area and plan towards its economic development.
It is worth mentioning that before the initiation of the Kick Off meeting, the representatives of the project beneficiaries were guided at the archaeological museum and the site of Ancient Olympia by the archaeologists of the Ephorate of Antiquities of Ilia Mr. K. Antonopoulos and C. Liaguras, while on the following day (26/02) they were guided by the supervisor of the project in Ilia Mrs. Ralli at the site and museum of Chlemoutsi/Clermont castle, where the targeted interventions of the project will be implemented.