Skip to main content

Intangible Cultural Heritage (ICH) & Sudan

Customs, knowledge, craft techniques  

The Heritage House

Sudanese Association for Heritage, Art and Culture Heritage House

Location: Khartoum, Khartoum 2   

Type of Organization: NGO


To build in Sudan capacities for safeguarding, protection and preservation of Sudanese cultural heritage, art and culture aiming to enhancing  mutual respect, tolerance and inter-understanding among different cultural groups for achieving peaceful coexistence and sustainable development.

Short History

Being established in 2016 by Dr. Ismail El Fihail, the Heritage House succeeded to manage and participate in several cultural projects, including capacity building for the implementation UNESCO 2003 Convention, development an ICH Strategy for Sudan for 2020-29, etc.


The Heritage House until the end of 2020:

  • Managed and participated in organization of 21 training workshops, covering:
    • The Implementation of the 2003 Convention on the Safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage
    • Developing Intangible Cultural Heritage Safeguarding Measures and Project Management,
    • Community Based Inventory Making and Placement of ICH Elements on Sudan National ICH Inventory
    • The nomination of ICH elements for inscription in the representative List of the intangible cultural heritage of humanity (i.e., al Toub Al Sudani, Sudanese National Costume for Women)
  • Collaborated in developing different policy documents for Sudanese Culture Sector:
    • ICH Inventorying Policy – adopted by the NCCH for Sudan
    • ICH Development Strategy for 2020-29 – adopted by the NCCH, under approval of the Government
  • Organized / co-organized different cultural events:
    • International Mother Language Days of 2019-21
    • A Nubian Evening including a lecture on Nubian Culture and Sudanese Heritage, presented by Prof Herman Bell and Mr. Moh. Osman Al Halaj.
    • The Era of Marawi Renaissance: An Exhibition and Lecture presented by the Head of Check Archeology Mission.
    • The Interlink between Art and Politics, a lecture by Dr. Hassan Musa.
    • Travel and Diplomatic Memories, Ambassador Farooq Abdel Rahman.
  • Participated in collection 42 ICH elements of current Sudanese ICH Inventory
  • Participated in preparation of the nomination file for recognition internationally the following ICH elements:
    • Date palm, knowledge, skills, traditions and practices – inscribed in the Representative List in 2019.
    • Arabic calligraphy, knowledge, skills and practices – nominated in 2020 with other Arab countries.
    • Al Toub Al Sudani, Sudanese national dress for women – nominated as a multi- national file in 2020.
    • Skills, Art and Practices associated with Engraving on Copper, Silver and Gold. A Multi- national nomination
  • Prepared the Encyclopedia of Food in the Sudan organizing 13 researchers for collecting Sudanese ethnic food descriptions, their recipes, seasonal and social occasions as well as food taboos and food of religious ceremonies. In 2018, the Heritage House organized two conferences on food and foodways where 37 scholars presented papers covering many topics related to food and identity.
  • Made documentary films about Al Sharifa Mariam Al Mirghania (a holy woman – the symbol of blessings, spiritualty and wisdom in Eastern Sudan, Eritrea, Ethiopia and Djibouti) and Al Toub (a women’s dress popular in Sudan).
  • Organized Movie Club

Key Staff:

  • Dr. Ismail Ali El Fihail (Director General), ICH Expert and a certified UNESCO facilitator.
  • Ms. Amel Osman Hamed, Head of Heritage Section, ICH Expert and a certified UNESCO facilitator.

Contact 1

  • Name: Dr. Ismail Ali El Fihail (Director); Rufaida Besher Abu Agla (Secretary)
  • Phone: +249 909 331 867
  • Email:

Contact 2