Here comes the Pompeii Museum Guides for All, another step towards realizing the enjoyment of the ancient city

Another piece to realize the accessibility and use of the ancient city of Pompeii. To the initiatives aimed at promoting the inclusion of all citizens in the cultural heritage, the Archaeological Park adds the Pompeii Museum for All guide, created in collaboration with the Museum for All team of the non-profit association L’abilità in collaboration with the De Agostini Foundation. Two free guides aimed at people with intellectual disabilities, which contain a range of materials in Easy to Read and Augmentative Alternative Communication (AAC) that you can review and use both in preparation, during the visit itself, or as a follow-up to the experience.

Pompeii thus becomes part of the network of Museums for all, created in 2015 by L’abilità onlus and the De Agostini Foundation, which thus includes 38 sites of artistic and cultural heritage present throughout the territory of the State, with the aim of dismantling cognitive barriers through a simple tool and a language common to all. These tools join other initiatives of the park, which aim to guarantee the widest possible use of competent archaeological sites: from routes without architectural barriers, such as “Pompeii for all” and Villas Arianna and Villa San Marco in Stabia, Villa di Poppea in Oplontis and in the Boscoreale site with Villa Regina and the Antiquarium; to 3D tactile models with Braille explanatory supports at some sites in Pompeii (specify which); at the “Pompeii in blu – journey to the house of Menandro” guide, an interactive visual agenda for people with autism spectrum disorders; to complete multimedia routes Enjoy Lis Art on monitors and in the app and visit the sites of Oplontis, Boscoreale and Stabia.

“We are celebrating an important stage in the journey that the Archaeological Park of Pompeii has taken, starting in 2016 with Pompeii for Everyone, towards a new vision of accessibility. From this point of view, the archaeological site becomes an inclusive meeting place for the whole community, where diversity is an enrichment and no longer a limit – comments the director of the park, Gabriel Zuchtriegel – the accessible guide is an essential tool for reading the ancient city through a simplified language that allows you to understand the richness of this place. However, simplification should not be confused with trivializing or limiting knowledge; on the contrary, we want the complexity that surrounds us to be decipherable, so that everyone can understand the beauty of Pompeii in its entirety, even those who do not have the tools to interpret abstract concepts, such as small children. The Pompeii Museums for All tool will also be essential to work with schools in an increasingly inclusive way.”

“We are very proud that the “Museo per Tutti” can include Pompeii among its cultural assets – he emphasizes Carlo Riva director of L’alità onlus and responsible for the Museo per tutti – today’s presentation is at the end of a very complex work by our team in collaboration with the staff of the Archaeological Park, which required a very long time of reflection and technical comparison to understand how to return the beauty of ancient Pompeii to visitors with mental disability. What guided us was the passion and desire to tell the story, the life, the art to the audience that we want to bring closer to this place, so that they perceive – like each of us – its value and meaning. The use of this world heritage site by children and adults with intellectual disabilities is an act of courtesy and respect for culture to belong to all and sundry. Two hundred pages of correct words, images and communication symbols, dedicated descriptions, which are made available to people who will be able to understand the myth, the daily life, the spirituality of Pompeii with the pleasure of visiting with ease, and therefore with the wonder born of understanding where you are and what they mean Pompeii to you”.

“A museum for everyone,” he adds Marcela Drago, Secretary General of the De Agostini Foundation – he is especially proud of us because he is the only one of his kind. We created it together with the association L’abilità in 2015 and we continue to support it because we believe that offering people with intellectual disabilities the opportunity to enjoy works of art and enjoy the beauty of cultural places is as important as removing architectural barriers that limit people with physical disabilities disability. In fact, social inclusion is one of the goals that our foundation supports in many projects, with the deep conviction that it is important to ensure that everyone, especially the most vulnerable, have the same opportunities. We are really pleased that the Museum for All is coming to the Archaeological Park of Pompeii, one of the most representative and important archaeological sites in the world. This milestone defines the success of this initiative, and I hope today that the Museum for All can create this place of incredible beauty truly for everyone.”

Developed through accessibility work carried out by the Museum for All team with the support of officials and park staff to make the visit easy despite the complexity of the site, the guide route winds through the entire archaeological area and proposes 15 stages, including public and private buildings and the Antiquarian . An in-depth excursion is devoted to the latter with a description of approximately ten finds.

Descriptive cards are available to the public, full of details about both the organization of the spaces and the decorative devices that make the villas and palaces unique; detailed chapters or boxes for those who want to know more; a simplified orientation map that allows you to easily locate the stages of the route and all available service points so that the public is more autonomous in their orientation; an index of routes created in images to facilitate understanding of visit times; a set of AAC pictograms that will allow caregivers to create even more personalized materials to support understanding of explanations and the visit itself.

The work involved two local associations, Scintilla, in collaboration with the educational services of Pio Monte della Misericordia in Naples, and Tulipano for the certification of guides. This collaboration saw validator groups made up of people with intellectual disabilities, protagonists of the work to improve the guides and test their usability on site by organizing cycles of visits within the area. Guides are available at the park information offices and/or can be downloaded from the institutional website To learn more about the Museum for All project and the sites involved, you can visit www.museopertutti. org


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