SOS Starini

The Credo Bonum Foundation has started the Internet portal SOS Starini, a project dedicated to the preservation of the cultural and historical heritage on the territory of modern-day Bulgaria. The idea came out of a series of exhibitions on cultural heritage that the foundation organised, and following discussions with archaeologists, historians, architects and public figures who take this problem to heart.

Bulgaria is positioned at a crossroads, at a place that through the ages has been the cradle of several civilisations from which material evidence has come down to our modern state. It falls on us, the people with keen civic conscience, to preserve the priceless treasures we have inherited and hand them down to the future generations.

Despite good many cultural and historical sites of national and world significance, the majority of problems related to how they are to be preserved has been pushed away of the focus of current public debate. Public interest in the matter is low. Notoriously, treasure hunters plunder many historical sites with hardly anyone paying attention. As a result, a string of valuable finds have already gone to private instead of to museum collections.

SOS Starini deals with irregularities around archaeological sites whose preservation is being funded under the EU’s Regional Development operational programme. The portal alerts about artefacts at risk that, after their discovery, have undergone substandard degree of preservation. Special attention is paid to treasure hunting, a plague that sweeps away, by plundering and overall damage, a considerable number of archaeological sites. Among the highlights are also problematic texts in the Cultural and Historical Heritage Act that allow these offences to take place.

To realise its goals, the Credo Bonum Foundation will contact and offer partnership to professional organisations, nongovernmental bodies and civic initiatives that have undertaken measures in this field.