Sponsor Bosnian-Herzegovinian youth to build peace

by Center for Peacebuilding

Hello all! We at CIM hope you had a wonderful summer! The summer of 2016 has been extremely busy, but extremely fun and successful for the Center for Peacebuilding! In August the Center hosted our annual Peace Camp for Bosnian and Herzegovinian youth! We had 30 youth from all over the country come to CIM’s Garden of Opportunity to learn peace-building skills! We also hosted our first Peace Caravan! We hosted panels on peace building all over Bosnia and Herzegovina with participants! It has been a very busy summer, but a very successful and exciting one! 

CIM hosted young people from all over Bosnia and Herzegovina, from different backgrounds, for a 7-day peace camp! At the camp the young people learned peace building skills as well as lessons in healing and reconciliation. The young people also learned how to be peace builders in their own communities, with trainings in how to host peace building activities on their own. It was hosted at CIM’s Garden of Opportunities and was a great success for the future of peace building!

Peace Camp Activities

  1. Council: This activity involved participants learning how to speak openly and listening to each other with no judgment or interruption.
  2. Dialogues: This activity involved participants learning how they could influence their communities towards peace building.
  3. Identity Workshops: This activity focused on participants recognizing their own identities, and how to work with them.
  4. Round Table: The theme of this round table was “Why young people are leaving Bosnia and Herzegovina and what young people can do about it”

After finishing CIM’s Peace Camp participants travelled throughout Bosnia and Herzegovina on CIM’s Peace Caravan for six days. On the Peace Caravan participants hosted panel discussions in 6 different cities throughout the country. The theme of the panel discussions was “What youth can do to work towards peace in Bosnia and Herzegovina”. These panel discussions were held in Sanski Most, Glamoc, Sarajevo, Mostar, Milici and Doboj. Throughout the Caravan participants were able to learn about the history and culture of Bosnia and Herzegovina. In Sarajevo participants got to be a part of the Omladinski Film Festival, while in Doboj and Mostar participants got to explore historical ruins. The panels in all the cities were highly successful and sparked important discussions about peace building in Bosnia and Herzegovina. CIM’s first every Peace Caravan was a great success!


Peace and Love,

The CIM Team


Our final Peace Camp activites have concluded in November 2015. This year's peace camp have again attracted wonderful and motivated participants from all over Bosnia.

After the end of the week, the participants went home to implement community peacebuilding activities.

Most activities included tours to local religious and historical sites, meetings with religious leaders at these religious sites, visits with youth organizations in the various regions, trips to museums, and time for socializing and discussion. Workshops with a focus on younger participants focused primarily on addressing stereotypes and ways to approach peace building activism. Participants in Mostar, after visits to local religious sites and an extensive discussion on their learnings, distributed leaflets through town with messages of peace.
In total they have organised 9 community events, and as a result they were able to reach out to 100 more people in their own towns and cities (Mostar, Travnik, Gornji Rahic in Brcko District, Buzim and Prijedor, Banja Luka in partnership with Helsinki Citizen’s Foundation, Kresevo and Visoko).


The participants also wrote stories of what Peace Camp has meant to them and we wanted to share one with you.

It was a very great honor for me to participate in this peace camp and to get to meet such nice people that I got to spend 7 days with. Those 7 days were great fun for me and I learned a lot. I learned how we all, regardless of how much we try, have prejudices about other people, but also how to minimize those prejudices. I learned how to be different and equal. I learned a lot about different religions. Religions that are and are not so familiar to me. The most important thing is that I learned something new about myself. I learned how to look at the world in a new way and to accept things the way they are, and try to be a better person. I thought about things that I didn’t think I was capable of talking about. And I felt relief. In these 7 days,  there were many smiles and tears, joy and frustration. And those feelings united us and made us into one. In one word, it was extraordinary. Thank you for that, Amra


Hope you will have wonderful holidays, and a winter full of joy and kindness.


Best wishes from Sanski Most,

Adelina and the CIM Team

Since our last report, we have managed to successfully organise another annual Peace Camp training. During the summer months, we recruited 18 youth with ages between 18 and 25 and from the 22nd-29th August 2015, we trained our participants from Visoko, Priboj, Brcko, Vitez, Travnik, Mostar, Prijedor, Buzim, Kresovo, Han Pijesak, Sarajevo, Bjelina, and Banja Luka.

The programme included many workshops designed to facilitate personal transformation, to expand the participants' knowledge and perspectives on current issues in BiH, as well as to break down prejudices and use the activities as cultural experiences to find out more about different traditions and faiths. There were additionally workshops aimed at helping youth bring their learning to their communities. The youth learnt how to design and implement small scale peacebuilding activities upon their return home.

As a result of the training, 18 peace activities will be organised by the participants in their home communities. Some of the feedback from Peace Camp, and what the experience meant to the participants, is outlined in the comments below:

'This was my first time participating in peace camp and I was thrilled. First of all we had a very good quality of education and an opportunity to learn many things which will be practised in the future. What's more we had the opportunity to meet young young from different faiths. Given that the camp was such good quality, I got the motivation to continue to spread and work with these topics.'

'This is a place where we all are like one group where Nedela, Vinko and Marija, become real friends, where there are no tensions and anxiety, as there I have found my peace...here you arrive with some pain, but you return home recovered in some way.'


'I overcame many stereotypes, and learned how not to use prejudices. I learned what are the fundamental human rights, how to communicate, how to work in a team, and how to resolve conflict.'


Dear Peace Camp sponsors, 

My name is Nedzla, I am 20, from Visosko, and a participant in the 2014 training. Last year around this time I was preparing to submit my application to CIM, and I now wanted to share reflections as a gratitude for the opportunity to take part in Peace Camp. 

The opportunity to go to new places, cities, and meet new people is always a good motivation for me to do something. The trip to Bihac, and participating in Peace Camp 2014 exceeded my expectations. The most important lesson for me was that forgiveness, new beginnings, doing good things, and spreading peace and reconciliation with painful past, brings positive and useful results. The most important thing to realize in life is that all of us are people with fears,stories,wishes,suffering, no matter from where we come from or what nationality or religion we have. Our differences are our fortune, and we should get know each other instead of acting on prejudice. We should be proud of it instead of despising it.

I am proud of my friendships with people from Peace Camp, as their life stories and experiences made me better person. I will recommend Peace Camp and peacebuilding to young people who want to discover who they are, who want to make their own picture of past in our country, who want to create a better future and to believe in it.

I am so grateful to my dear Vadidin and Mevludin. I want to thank them for every word and lesson of peace,love, and respect. I want to congratulate them on their work and not giving up. They are heroes who won demons of past, and who create a better future made of peace and love. I hope that more and more people will follow them in their mission.

Thank you once again for giving me this chance, and for helping so many other young people go to Peace Camp. 



at the end of peace camp 2014
at the end of peace camp 2014

A few weeks ago a Bosnian TV show called 'Perspektiva' went to Mostar to speak to young people. Mostar is an iconic place in Bosnia, famous for its bridge which now divides the city into a Muslim part and a Catholic part. A young man was interviewed and he said he had never, in his entire life, crossed the bridge into the other community. He didn't know how they lived like, how the people were like, etc. A friend of mine was discussing this with me and was baffled by the story: 'how can you live in one of the most important and visited cities in Bosnia, and not leave your neighbourhood?'. Sadly, Mostar is not an isolated case in this regard. Many cities here are like this, and young people have very little experience of living in a diverse/multicultural society, despite being able to find people of different backgrounds steps away, or just across a bridge. This is a dangerous trend in a country which suffers from fear, nationalistic rhetoric, different histories, facts, and war trauma. Often the first step to change this is to show people a different perspective. To take their hand, cross the bridge with them, and show them those people living there look like you, go to similar cafes, have similar houses, and are not out to get you.

Peace Camp aims to work on these perspectives. It's been 6 months since young people from various towns and cities in Bosnia attended our training.We are forwarding their throughts on how it helps them personally, and how it motivated them to further become peace activists in the communities.

Among the activities they have implemented so far we can count an inter-ethnic camp, a work camp, weekly workshops on tolerance and non-violent communication, and constantly advocating for more integration of youth within their communities. 

We thank you for investing in the project. We hope you feel like you have made a difference by doing so. If you are considering supporting us in the future, heads up, today (March 18th), globalgiving is matching all donations by 30%. It's a great way to add a bonus to your donation, but be quick, matching will only apply as long as a limited amount of funds last. 


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Organization Information

Center for Peacebuilding

Location: Sanski Most, Una-Sana Kanton - Bosnia and Herzegovina
Website: http:/​/​unvocim.net
Project Leader:
Vahidin Omanovic
Sanski Most, Bosnia and Herzegovina

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