Don’t Get Mad

Mirian Bllaci
Community engagement, Diversity, Education, Youth oriented
Intangible, Tangible
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The traditional board game Mos u Nxeh (Don’t Get Mad) is a platform for children to learn more about their rich cultural. The diverse and multi-faceted cultural elements espoused by this game safeguards a rich and unique piece of Europe’s cultural heritage. Although children today may appear too absorbed in their digital games, they will certainly not ‘get mad’ at this one! On the contrary they can enjoy an old family classic. They (re)discover their own heritage through play and discussion.

The children and adults learning series called “E Ka Kush e Ka” collection (EKKK) is a book and game series for children and adults through which they can (re)discover cultural heritage and examine some of the world’s many complexities. Cultural heritage is not only about learning facts; it can be the ideal (and fun) educational tool for learning about new things, other people and our society. It can also be an instrument that helps people self-reflect, develop new skills, and/or test their mental vivacity. And, most importantly for us, it can be a path towards democratic citizenship and mutual respect. One of the collection’s most recent additions is a play on the traditional Albanian board game Mos u Nxeh (Don’t Get Mad). In CHwB’s revitalised version, the board game is a platform for people to learn more about the rich cultural heritage that surrounds them, from the histories of historical persons to important buildings and places in their city. It also gives players (mainly children and adolescents) the opportunity to ‘meet’ some of Albania’s craftspersons whose traditional craft continues to contribute to the country’s intangible cultural heritage that is both special and worth preserving. The wool weaver, ironsmith, and carpenter, among others, appear throughout the game.

European Dimension

The various stories, that the Mos u Nxeh board games tell, mirror the multifaceted dimension of Albania and its difficult past that still shapes the country today. The stories are tailored for each Albanian city and highlight the micro-culture and cultural heritage typical of each area. The underpinning of this project is to demonstrate that (cultural) diversity makes our society richer and that communities have both the duty and right to preserve that richness. Hence through playing the board game, communities will be urged to think about these points, to preserve their local culture, which is also a unique piece of Europe’s diverse cultural heritage. Collaboration between various actors is key to the dissemination and creation of the Mos u Nxeh experience. This is an entertaining, people-centred activity that also encourages people to think about cultural heritage as a resource. The aim of this game and the stories it tells, is threefold:1.Educate the young generation of Albanians;2.Provide Albanian school teachers with an educational tool for tackling fundamental issues such as respecting and valuing neighbours, dealing with difficult pasts;3.Empower children and adults to tell their own cultural heritage-based stories and connect them with others told across Europe.

Legal body/representative

Cultural Heritage without Borders Albania

Mirian Bllaci, Program Manager

Description of the project

The Mos u Nxeh board games help explain life in different Albanian cities, including places like the UNESCO World Heritage Centre of Gjirokastra. The activities linked to the game would include the following: 1.Heritage ateliers with the board game: During these ateliers, our staff would introduce the game and its importance to pupils and teachers. We would explain the cultural significance of everyday objects, sites, and historical persons found in the game. Teachers and students would learn how to preserve these tangible objects and intangible traditions. 2.Public activities in the cities’ main squares: We would also host public activities for people of all ages with the help of various private and public actors in order to raise awareness about the linkages between heritage, history and culture. We would use life-size versions of the board game. This type of event would not only serve as entertainment but also trigger discussions about neglected heritage and possible solutions.

Legacy of the project

This project is a way to empowering communities to assess their own problems and find solutions. We hope to inspire those in educational roles to continue using this game as a teaching aid and developing it for the ever-growing and changing city-scape. The project has a long-term perspective since it is part of the National Pilot Program launched by the Ministry of Youth and Education

Budget breakdown

Developing Mos u Nxeh board game for 3 cities(2600);Printint of small portable versions (4050);Printing of larger scale version for public activities(2000);Organization of heritage ateliers in schools and public spaces of 3 cities(1350)

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