Youth on the Trail of World Heritage

Youth on the Trail of World Heritage
School twinning program
2019-2020 Edition

Short description of the program

The Youth on the Trail of World Heritage program consists in pairing schools located in World Heritage cities and making it possible for groups of young people aged between 15 and 18 years old to get acquainted with the notion of World Heritage. Pairings allow students of different cities to virtually exchange their ideas, knowledge and work related to this subject. The students thus become aware of the universal value of their heritage and the challenges involved in the management of heritage on the international level.

Moreover, the OWHC offers a twinning scholarship of CAN $10,000, which will facilitate, for one or two groups of students, the organization of stay in their twin city. The young people thus have the opportunity to meet each other more than virtually and to discover in situ the heritage wealth of their twin city.

Proceedings of the program

The Youth on the Trail of World Heritage program lasts over one school year (September 2019 to June 2020 for this edition). Following the announcement of their twinning, the classes will have 4 months to exchange and interact virtually with their twins.

The teachers of the two twinned cities are responsible for establishing the schedule of activities with the support, if needed, of the contact people from the participating cities.


The participating city must be a member city in good standing of the OWHC for the past three (3) years or more (including the current year). A city whose inscription on the UNESCO World Heritage List or membership with the OWHC is less than three (3) years old is also eligible if it has always paid its annual fees since joining the organization.

The participating school(s) must be on the territory of the member city in good standing of the OWHC.

Strengths and objectives of the program

This project has many advantages. Not only there are no registration fees for the cities that are members in good standing, but it also makes it possible to reach many different audiences: students, teaching staff, school administrators, families, local authorities, etc. Moreover, the international twinning allows students to open their horizons, to become aware of heritage issues on a global scale and to develop a critical thinking about what needs to be done in terms of heritage protection and sustainability.


  • To deepen students’ knowledge of their city’s heritage and to make them reflect on the importance of protecting and valuing it
  • To discover another World Heritage City by exchanging virtually with the students of the twin city
  • To offer the chance of visiting a twin city with the support of a twinning scholarship

Suggested activities*

  • Divide the group in teams and invite them to study their city and the city of the school with which they are paired
  • Ask the teams to identify the similarities and differences between their city and their twin city and to examine the urban challenges set by heritage on the international level
  • Invite the young people to use social networks in order to exchange more easily: creation of a Facebook group; creation of an Instagram account and a specific hashtag for their group, creation of a blog, exchange of emails, etc.
  • Use the model sheet as a basis for writing their learning on the two twin cities. The model sheet must include a few pictures of the twin city and short texts on the similarities and differences between the two cities as well as the urban challenges set by heritage on the international level. A model sheet is included below (produced by the OWHC).
  • Make some field trips on the World Heritage site of the city
  • Invite the students of the two cities to consult the Web site of the OWHC and the pages of the member cities to discover the importance and variety of cultural wealth in each continent

*Any other activities undertaken by a school are valid, provided they follow the objective of the program.

Schedule of the program

4 September 2019

Beginning of the registration of the schools

11 October 2019

End of the registration of the schools

At the latest on 25 October 2019

Communication to cities and schools to announce the twinning and beginning of virtual exchanges

14 February 2020

Beginning of submission of the works and of the scholarship application file

13 March 2020

End of submission of the works and scholarship applications

At the latest end of April 2020

Analysis of the scholarship applications and selection of the winning schools

Summer (June-September) 2020

Exchange trip

Any city wishing to register in the program must first and foremost read the Practical Guide for Local Managers.

Practical Guide for Local Managers

For further information

Please contact the programs administrator of the OWHC, Ms. Andréanne Charest:

Important documents

Written report

Study trip

Model sheet_ENG