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Hear the Children: Healing Through Stories and Art

The collaborative project “Hear the Children: Healing Through Stories and Art”, implemented by Humanity in Action BiH as partnering organization, together with Education for Equality and Ecology – Edeqec, and “Art Center Cublo” as leading organization, emphasizes the significance of art and literature during wartime, illustrating how their presence in such contexts aids children and youth in discovering hope amidst adversity.

As part of the “Hear the Children: Healing Through Stories and Art” project, we had the opportunity to host a team from Art Center “Cublo” from Ukraine. Our guests were Natalia Shevchenko (psychologist and psychotherapist from Kharkiv, and theater director), Daryna Pirich (playwright and director of amateur theater for children), Tetyana Literati (journalist and writer), Tetyana Kolesnyk (activist, owner of 3 cafes), Tetyana Smryga (artist and Director of the Cublo Center). Their visit lasted 2 days, 19-20. February, which were filled with numerous activities. On February 19, we only visited the Museum of Wartime Childhood in where our guests had the opportunity to see the exhibition and talk with the director Amina Bloodthirsty. After the visit, our guests visited Baščaršija where they had the opportunity to try Bosnian coffee. As the last activity of the day, we visited the Ars Aevi exhibition in the City Hall, which is ours presented to the guests by founder and director Enver Hadžiomerspahić. On February 20, we started with with a visit to the Gallery on 11/07/95, and continued with a visit to the Sarajevo War Theater – SARTR, where we had the opportunity to talk with the actress and director Maja Salkić, and watch the part rehearsals of the play “Measure for Measure”, by William Shakespeare. After the lunch break, we had meeting with Amela Puljek-Shank from the Peace Academy. It turned out to be the most memorable moment of their visit was when they had the opportunity to discuss with Amel Fr her experience, and learn from the example of the Peace Academy how to deal with trauma in peace building processes. On February 28, we held two online sessions with our Ukrainian partners joined. During the first session, we spoke with Velma Šarić from Post-Conflict Research Center, and then with Aja Jusić, director of the “Forgotten Children of the War” association. During these two sessions, Velma and Ajna shared their experiences and innovative approaches when u dealing with the past and war traumas through different forms of art. Theirs acting through various plays such as the play “In the name of the father” and a documentary series “Ordinary heroes” are excellent examples that inspired our guests. We got a positive comment from our guests, and we left the possibility of future cooperation with the Cublo center.