The Upper Svaneti region of Georgia’s Caucasus mountains is home to indigenous peoples and stunning natural beauty. Svan culture has been passed down from generation to generation orally and in traditional practices, handicrafts and art work. Yet, the Svan cultural heritage and the natural environment are under threat by the effects of globalization and the development of large-scale energy projects in the region.
Started in 2016, the WE ARE SVANETI photostories project aimed to empower the Svan youth to tell their own stories of culture, nature and livelihood. The project was initiated by local school teachers and a group of environmental organizations that strive to protect the Svan cultural heritage and the local nature. Through photography and writing workshops, over a dozen photo stories were collected. They capture an intimate portrayal of the Svan world in transition.
Set to collaborate further, the local communities and the environmental groups sat down to think about how to promote the stunning beauty of Svaneti and the richness of its culture with the rest of the world.
That is how in 2017 We are Svaneti Festival was born, which
- seeks a sustainable way to attract people, organizations or enterprises who want to contribute to the conservation of Svaneti’s culture, nature and lifestyles by developing ecotourism.
- is about gathering people in Svaneti and establishing a network for long-term communication, education and future partnerships between local communities and their guests, by exchanging experience, stories and knowledge;
We are Svaneti!
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