The Pacific Islands Museums Association (PIMA) was established as a regional forum where heritage professionals could exchange their views and work towards improving the quality of the services that they provided to the public.
The first PIMA Board was appointed in 1994 and the Association’s Vision, Mission and Aims were first developed in 1997. During the first years of PIMA, the Secretariat for the Pacific Community (SPC) hosted and supported the Secretariat in New Caledonia. PIMA was officially accepted as an affiliated organisation of the International Council of Museums (ICOM) in 1998 and in May 1999 PIMA was incorporated in Fiji as a Charitable Trust. The Secretariat’s office was located at the Fiji Museum until mid-2006 when PIMA relocated the Secretariat to its current office hosted by the Vanuatu Cultural Centre.
It is the first and only regional, multilingual, multicultural, non-profit organisation that assists Pacific museums, cultural centres and peoples to preserve Pacific Island Heritage. PIMA develops community participation in heritage management and brings together museums and cultural centres in Pacific Islands to develop their capacity to identify, research, manage, interpret and nurture cultural and natural heritage. PIMA advocates the development of regional cultural resource management policies and practices, facilities training, and provides a forum for exchange of ideas and skills.
Practically, PIMA works through courses, workshops, forums for exchange of values and ideas, the development of exhibits and other projects, all based on constant communication by email, fax, telephone, but most effectively, by meeting face-to-face. It is a difficult, challenging and costly task.
PIMA has been active in the region and in particular in Fiji when it comes to heritage management especially in terms of working with Pacific countries in nomination procedure to the World Heritage Sites. PIMA assisted in the coordination of the World Heritage Centre 2nd Global Strategy Meeting in Port Vila in August 1999.
PIMA is governed by its Constitution and an Executive Board consisting of seven elected members, one honorary member, and four Trustees. The Board includes the Chairperson, Vice-Chairperson, Secretary, Treasurer and three members. The Executive Board has full powers of management, and appoints a Secretary General to be responsible for the daily performance of the administrative and organisational work for PIMA.
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