The selection of working groups and their coordinators began during the February Training workshop. The project team held discussions with the project consultants on possible candidates for regional working group coordinators. The selection criteria were a) to be sacred site guardian, traditional practitioner or scholars affiliated with the provincial institutions, b) to have an experience on safeguarding ICH with the Aigine CRC, National Commission of UNESCO to the KR or other related structure. A preliminary list of 10-12 people was penciled in and followed up by individual discussions and agreements. Thus, the project team has selected 7 (seven) regional coordinators and identified a network of traditional practitioners and sacred site guardians to form regional working groups for carrying out community-based inventorying of sacred sites and rare ritual practices.
The regional coordinators started their field research on inventorying sacred sites and collecting data on rare ritual practices and other ICH elements related to the pilgrimage practice in April 2019. At the very beginning of their work, each coordinator carried out training sessions for their local working groups on technical aspects, namely on recording interviews, transcribing interviews and using electronic communication services to send and receive information. The coordinators have also shared with the working group the information on behavioral rules and dress code during a pilgrimage to sacred sites. Both, the coordinators and their working groups got equipped with all the necessary knowledge, skills and tools to start their field work with the communities.