Heritage and traditions to respond to today’s social challenges
The “Time Travels” project illustrates how such a regional development strategy can be implemented. “Time Travels” was developed by Kalmar County Museum together with Bridging Ages, an international organisation, which is active mainly in Sweden, specialised in the use of local history as an instrument to benefit local communities. “Time Travels” consists of selecting a topic (social, spiritual or economic) such as democracy, gender, violence, religion, migration or employment, and exploring how it was addressed in the past and how it is dealt with in the present. Social issues of cohesion and community-building have very much been the focus over the past five to seven years. Examples of topics are the role of women in society, the social aftermath of war, the impacts of the economic crisis on daily life, the degree of justice in a community or the process of democracy building. While discussing and debating in a “safe space”, participants engage in folkloric practical and manual works of ancient and often abandoned activities.