Creation of Baguio creative council proposed

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The City Council, during last Monday’s regular session, approved on first reading a proposed ordinance creating the Baguio Creative Council and for other similar purposes.

The council stated that the creation of the body is in support of the United Nations frameworks, particularly the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the city urban agenda.

Further, the body’s functional, operational and technical mandates based on the Philippine Strategic Framework to promote Philippine Culture and Values will be aligned with existing frameworks, locally aid internationally.

The council will also support the National Commission on Culture and the Arts (NCCA) vision of ‘A Filipino people with a strong sense of nationhood and deep respect for cultural diversity.’

Under the proposed ordinance, the council shall implement activities directly in line with the network’s mission statement on strategic framework outlining the UN Creative Cities Network (UCCN)  collective vision and common objectives; report every 4 years on the implementation of its action plan presented in the application to take stock of the main achievements and to recommend future strategic mid-term initiatives; participate in each UCCN annual meeting, the major strategic gathering of the network, bringing member City Mayors and focal points together, which enables Baguio City to share the city’s experiences and brainstorm future collaborations; consider providing financial support to the network through the UCCN financial contribution mechanism to which member cities are invited to participate according to their financial situation and capacities; actively participate in the crafts and folk arts sub-network activities, including in the sub-network annual gathering and applying for the steering group in charge of coordinating member cities from a creative field and liaising with the UNESCO Secretariat and actively communicate with the UNESCO Secretariat to spread information and initiatives undertaken locally and internationally.

The creative council shall be composed of the Baguio Arts and Crafts Collectives, Inc. (BACCI) present as the chairperson with the City Mayor as the co-chairperson. The UCCN proponent shall serve as the vice chairperson while the members are representatives from the crafts and folk arts sector, sculpture and carving, metal craft, weaving, basket making and tattooing and representatives each from the other creative industries using the UNESCO cultural domains framework.

The council stipulated the action plan shall be primarily funded out of the city’s internal budgetary allocations and that an appropriation of P5 million shall be allocated annually for study, preparation and policy-making.

The council claimed policies should be cascaded into programs by the executive department to integrate the projects in their budgets, for the preservation of culture and creative innovation.

Baguio City was designated as a creative city for crafts and folk arts in October 2017 by the UNESCO Creative Cities Network.

By Dexter A. See