The procedure of collecting museum objects and their incorporation into the War Childhood Museum’s collection is performed according to the international museum standards, defined by the International Council of Museums – ICOM. These international procedures were adjusted to the specific needs and characteristics of the WCM, and are laid out in the WCM’s Collection Management Policy and the Accession and Acquisition Procedure.
Members of the WCM’s Research Department and/or research collaborators from partner organization(s) are responsible for collecting objects, stories and/or recording oral history testimonies. Objects are personal belongings of participants who contribute to the WCM collection or personal belongings of their loved ones. Each participant writes a story about their conflict-related experiences and memories, which can be directly or indirectly tied to the object. Specific documents regulate the donation of objects and stories, as well as of the recording of oral history testimonies.
When donated objects reach the WCM’s Archival Department, trained staff catalogue and store them in accordance with the highest museum industry standards. All objects are documented in the WCM’s collection management system (CMS) and receive a unique identification number. The CMS allows for instant access and tracking of all data of the collection in a single platform. All objects are handled with utmost care and as rarely as possible. Reports for each object, containing detailed information on their physical condition, are also produced and tracked over time. If treatment is needed, objects are sent for conservation.
During the documentation process, object types, sizes, and materials are also identified. This information is useful to determine the specific storage conditions for each object of the collection, allowing them to be stored in the best possible way.
The WCM’s storage facility is equipped with a climate and humidity control system, which is constantly monitored and kept at optimum level. Levels of light are similarly controlled. All artefacts are stored in special archival closets, which are also fireproof. In addition, they are kept in high-quality acid-free boxes and other acid-free materials. In this manner, objects are protected from damaging factors, such as light exposure, dust, pests, bacterial penetration, and other negative environmental effects, ultimately guaranteeing their long-term safety and conservation.