Click here to watch the APOYOnline 25th Anniversary Video
Click here to download the poster “APOYOnline- 25 Years Building Communication in the Americas”

In 1989, a group of Latin American and North American conservation professionals met to discuss and identify needs of colleagues in Latin America, and to propose ways of supporting their professional activities. A questionnaire was sent to over 150 people, obtaining an 85% response. The overwhelming majority identified their main obstacle as the lack of timely information on conservation activities and news in Spanish and Portuguese, and their isolation from other professionals in the preservation field. A database of names, compiled through word of mouth, was started with the objective of creating a network and a newsletter in Spanish called APOYO to fill the gap of news and information and to connect people.

This network has continued to grow and currently it includes over 4,500 conservation and preservation professionals. In 1994, ICCROM offered the support of their Office of Database Management to merge APOYO’s database of over 1,500 names with ICCROM’s database. For 14 years until 2008, the resulting database was maintained and updated by ICCROM. These professionals are drawn from throughout the Americas, as well as Spain, Portugal and other countries. In addition to this wide geographical representation, there has been ample participation from the diverse specialties involved in conservation such as paper, library and archival materials, textiles, photographs, paintings, ethnographic objects, sculpture, metals, stone, and natural science. The network includes other individuals in related fields, among them museum, library and archives directors, curators, collections managers, educators, archaeologists, and architects.