The Cincinnati Museum Center has been awarded $150,000 through Museum & Community Collaboration Abroad (MCCA) that will support a cultural exchange program with the National Museums of Kenya Lamu Museums in eastern Africa.

The National Museums of Kenya was established in 1910 by the then East Africa & Uganda Natural History Society that set out to preserve artifacts of the area’s colonial settlers and naturalists. Over time the organization has experienced a wide variety of changes, which most recently was sparked by their “Museum in Change” program funding in part by the European Union. This program has led the organization on a mission to open itself up and become a “custodian of heritage” for the area while representing five key values of being authentic, reliable, unifying, caring and authoritative.

“This announcement is great news for the Cincinnati Museum Center,” U.S. Representative Steve Driehaus (D-OH) said in a press release. “The Museum Center is one of our community’s greatest assets, and an important part of our local heritage and history. This award will allow the Museum Center to share that heritage across cultures, while bringing a broader understanding of other cultures into our community.”

The $150,000 grant was awarded by MCCA which is administered by the American Association of Museums (AAM) and funded by the Bureau of Educational & Cultural Affairs of the U.S. Department of State. The funding is reportedly scheduled to continue through 2011.