8 May 2012

Kenya: Appreciating History

The Anglican Church of Kenya recently hired an archivist, Mr. Julius Dondi to assist in re- establishing the archives to international records management standards.

The primary source material on the Anglican Church and Kenya as a country give an account of the progression, growth and development over the years.

Among them are documentation of key events in the country in form of photographs, print material, sermons and reference books, most of which are unpublished.

The materials are in the process of being arranged and classified according to archival principles to make them accessible on regular basis.

Through examination of existing records, the archivist will review the inventory and determine the materials' suitability for preservation or disposition.

Determining which records are viable for permanent or long-term preservation to justify the cost of storage is a challenging task.

With time, a comprehensive archives and documentation policy will be developed to ensure proper management of the records, and guide their use and retention.

Archival records are normally unpublished and almost always unique, unlike books or other publications for which mass production and dissemination is done.

The provincial archives will incorporate a private collection section which will feature personal records of distinguished members of the ACK.

"The collective memory of the Anglican Church in Kenya is indispensable; to understand our identity, we have to know where we come from to better comprehend our current status and where we are going," he said.

The archives seeks to provide adequate and appropriate conditions of storage, protection of archival collection and provide educational and outreach programming whenever possible to increase public awareness and appreciation of the ACK history.

"All dioceses, parishes and departments in the church should practice good record keeping to reduce historical content gaps in future," he said.

Scholars, researchers government agencies and interested groups will in future access the historical records of Kenya; a supplementary of Kenya National Archives and Documentation Services and National Museums of Kenya.

The Provincial archives has a collection of archival material dating back to the year 1844.

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