Wadi Degla Virtual Museum
Museums are often thought of as physical spaces that can only be visited at specific times. In the twentieth century, museums integrated technology to cope with the times and attract the public. Though museum spaces continue to be valuable educational settings, they are not accessible to everyone. In light of NCE’s goal to raise public awareness and appreciation of Egypt’s natural heritage, we had to think critically about and envision what an accessible natural museum that can reach people all around Egypt could look like. So the idea of a “virtual museum” came about. A museum that, unlike traditional ones, can move, travel and disseminate knowledge about Egypt’s protected areas through portable VR goggles.
In 2018, Nature Conservation Egypt set up Egypt’s first virtual natural museum focused on Egypt’s gate to the Eastern Desert and one of Cairo’s two protected areas: Wadi Degla. Using Virtual Reality (VR) technology as a means to bring the public closer to nature, this project is documenting, visualizing, and reproducing educational materials on Wadi Degla in the form of three 360-videos (in Arabic and English) which discuss:
- The geological history of the National Park;
- The biodiversity and ecosystems of the National Park;
- Responsible tourism and the nature-friendly activities that could take place in the valley.
These three videos, coupled with short presentations and informative publications, help start informed conversations around the importance of preserving our protected areas and show how modern digital technology can be used for awareness-raising on biodiversity conservation and the promotion of responsible tourism activities.
So far, Wadi Degla Virtual Museum (WDVM) has been in schools, universities, other museums, conferences and parks in different neighborhoods around Egypt. Our goal is to have this project reach as many people as possible.
Want to get involved?
The work WDVM does is only possible because of our volunteers and our community’s feedback! We take pride in fostering community ownership and making sure anyone interested can leave their mark on this project. Is this something you want to do? To learn more about our volunteering program, please contact the project manager at email@example.com or reach out to our Facebook page.
If you are interested in hosting this engaging 360-degree environmental learning experience in your community, please book us through this form and we will get back to you as soon as possible.
If you are interested in discussing a sustainable partnership or a new opportunity for collaboration or funding, please contact the project manager at firstname.lastname@example.org
If you would like to know more about Wadi Degla and get updates on this project, follow our Facebook page.
The Wadi Degla Virtual Museum is mainly funded by the Global Environmental Facility’s (GEF) Small Grants Programme (SGP), with co-funding from NCE.