For this Peace Camp, we managed to gather youth from Sarajevo, Zenica, Banja Luka, Prijedor, Cazin, Gorazde, Tuzla, Viskogo, Doboj. We also welcomed EVS volunteers from Czech Republic, Poland, Belgium and two female participants from USA and Canada.
Twenty-two young people were given the opportunity to spend seven days in Sedra hotel near Bihac to learn about nonviolent communication, nonviolent conflict resolution and to conduct numerous workshops and discussions. They worked through common prayers, interactive games and exercises, working in small groups, all accompanied by dances and songs promoting peace and dialogue between the participants to better understand and discuss problems in our society.
„Peace Camp led me into totally different reality from one I know. My expectations were to meet new friends, gain some new experiences and skills. However now I am sure I got a lot more than that. Not only I met fantastic people, but I also learned a lot new things and gained new perspective perceiving myself and the others around me. Living in the world we live in and facing every-day situations while carrying traumas and pain we have, is really hard. Peace Camp was a place where we felt safe and sound with all we carry inside. Here we are accepted the way we are without judging and being judged. We learned to live with our pain felt what the others feel while listening to their stories. We opened our minds for the pain and joy of them. During the camp we became members of one big family to spend those few days feeling the spirit of togetherness and blissfulness. To be with people who have the same, beautiful goal is calming and inspiring. Taking your chance and joining CIM’s organized Peace Camp is my true advice for all who have not participated in the event yet” – says Amina from Gorazde
“This year’s Peace Camp was the first event of that kind I participated in. The direct reason for my participation was simultaneous translating from b/s/h language group (Bosnian, Serbian and Croatian) to English for all foreign participants. For this reason I didn’t expect much more than providing decent language assistance that makes sense, especially when none of mentioned languages is my mother tongue. Luckily, thanks to the training leaders and their help, I had some more relaxed moments which I used to get more involved in active participating. That was truly building experience to listen to young, smart but more importantly open-minded and tolerant people whose main goal is to keep peace in Bosna and Hercegovina. I am glad I had chance to hear and analyze so many viewpoints and ideas. I believe that participation in the Peace Camp was one of the best experiences during my EVS. Travelling and exploring a lot I managed to conduct numerous interesting discussions with locals however there were some themes that I never talked about before the Camp. Here we were openly speaking even the hardest experiences and that made me very glad and grateful that I was given the chance to be a part of the event” – says Piotr Gruntmeyer from Poland.
It is difficult to change the whole world, even if we really would especially after such an experience. What can start changing the world with ourselves, our families and friends. Small steps for us, but great for humanity.