Omladinska organizacija Svitac

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Svitac seeks to reconcile different communities in the Western Balkans through the medium of arts.
Last updated: November 2019

Svitac works within a community that has gradually transitioned towards a degree of normality following on from a civil war in which more than 100,000 people died and around half the population was displaced. It works to reconcile Bosniaks, Croats and Serbs.

Svitac works towards a society in which its members come to define themselves in terms of what they can achieve together rather than by whats sets them apart. In addressing itself to ongoing divides within the local community, it seeks to bring about a more lasting reconciliation between Bosniaks, Croats and Serbs. It attempts to achieve this by promoting:

  • Internationalism 
  • Anti-extremism
  • Anti-racism
  • Tolerance and Reconciliation

Svitac's approach to peacebuilding focuses upon challenging embedded attitudes and orthodoxies, at both the personal and social level. It also focuses upon youth engagement as they are more receptive to their core values and messages. 

Main projects 

  • Cultural and art diversity around the world. Held on a daily basis, around 30 children engage with art and literature in activities organised by Svitac. 
  • Monthly classes. Participants can choose from a wide range of activities which include art, language and music. International volunteers are also encouraged to develop their own experiences, interests and skills. 
  • Summer camps. The camps bring together all the knowledge acquired throughout the year to engage in reflection. 
  • Study groups - Young people from all over the world have the opportunity to learn about intercultural youth work.

Major achievements 

  • Administrative capacity. Svitac is the only international volunteer-based NGO within Brcko District. 
  • Broad community engagement. Programs are inclusive and engage with each of the respective national groups. 
  • Cross-community provision. Svitac expanded its provision to engage with older age groups.
  • Established reputation within the local community. It has had to work overtime to gain the trust of the local community. 
  • International engagement. It has increased its ability to engage and attract international volunteers which demonstrate an international 'buy in' to our core values and mission. 
  • Program provision. Svitac's current programs have developed and grown since their establishment. 
  • Staff retention. They have a strong ability to retain staff and attract volunteers. 
  • Sustainability. programs are low-cost and overheads are reduced to a minimum.

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