YMCA Bosnia and Herzegovina

National Council of YMCAs

Date of foundation of the YMCA: 2011

Brief YMCA History

At YMCA Bosnia and Herzegovina we believe the values and skills learned early on are vital building blocks for life. Because of the YMCA in Bosnia, more young people in neighborhood of Sarajevo are taking a greater interest in learning and making smarter life choices.

For the moment children and teens learn values and positive behaviors, and get to explore their unique talents and interests, helping them realize their potential in sports arts and crafts.

We believe that our activities we run at YMCA makes for confident Bosnian kids today and contributing and engaged adults tomorrow shaping the countries context at least a little bit on a grass root level.

Mission Statement

Our Mission is to produce a wide range of cultural, educational, and artistic programs that will bring to the forefront classical music values, which will be disseminated to a broad-based audience in BIH. Our Vision is to be the premier producer of intercultural exchange programs, cross disciplined approach that celebrate the richness of values, showcase the contemporary creative arts to Bosnia community. So far we have organized Classical Musicians Tours, Sleep over Classical Music Camps for children, all day music camps and schools in nature that use music as a tool for peer education and pece building. Our other goals are artistic cooperation & exchange of experiences with World known artists ,Artistic mobility & exchange of art works with other countries.

Our goal with the project at hand is to create a network of new and original artistic projects between International community and the Balkans Investing in classical music promotion and preservation with modern approach .
We want to bring classical music, classical guitar to each citizen’s doorstep through organization of artist installations followed with concerts. We have experience in cross artist expression, hosting exhibitions, and other cultural events. Our final aim is to promote the development of cultural tourism in the involved territories by means of the promotion of artistic-cultural initiatives.

Youth Initiative for creative engagement ‘IMKA’, through its program activities works on promotion of the classical music and consistent construction of common identity and pro-European awareness in Bosnia and Herzegovina community.

All our efforts are focused towards sustainable support and affirmation for classical music and contemporary art more closely classical guitar and chamber music orchestrating.

Main Programmes

At YMCA Bosnia we use sport  and music as a tool of reconciliation and conflict prevention. Our project uses sport afterschool programs and weekend camps to tackle specific social issue of hatred and prejudice in both parents and kids. We use tennis and floor ball to engage kids, youth and families through active and fun activities to become responsible healthy citizens free of prejudice and stereotypes.

We also conduct cardiovascular exercises cardio fitness in elementary schools in Sarajevo through Project Fitness Cool and Health Campaign. Through all activities we run we engage youth in activities to prevent antagonism and hatred and to bring youth and their families together off and on court and increase diversity in Sarajevo community.

Organization of the contests, tournaments and various get together prove itself over and over to be  perfect opportunity to tackle many issues that are critical for Bosnian community and its future in a sense of citizen education, civic action, parents involvement  and peaceful coexistence and wellbeing. Our indirect talking of character building, conflict resolution, stereotypes, prejudices and human rights implementation in action through sport has proven itself very successful as our kids are definitely growing up in more responsible citizens with more developed compassion. We achieved long term reach as pressures from other sides were lowered and kids bound more and left more emotions on court and because real team and close friends. Mosques, churches, formal education media had far less  reaching and weaker effect on our kids and parents  now because kids and parents now felt belonging and activities were continual.

Why we choose sport:

Sport is non-political (apolitical) and a neutral field, where the beneficiaries of the project (elementary and high school students); easiest and fastest grow together as a group on deeper meaningful level. Sport is a widespread social activity that touches nearly all categories of society and this is especially more true with young people. One of the basic methods of application of sport and day camps as reconciliation tool is that children from different ethnic groups are grouped in joint teams, groups and they work together and all lines of division are erased through game fun and play.

Kids going through our camps and being involved in our projects  all embrace common strategy for peace not only being active in sport but being catalyst of positive change. This project has proven itself to have huge multiplier effect on whole country as top notch sports activities are run but with exceptional focus on character development and civil engagement and development of personality. All YMCA programmers have a strong importance on the values of caring, honesty, respect, and responsibility. With all of our students coming from various communities, different backgrounds diversity is nr one value and is always promoted for understanding of individuals with different backgrounds and cultures. Also hosted programming by students and staff are always designed for cultural acknowledgement and understanding.

Being that we had  great outcome on our camps and afterschool programs in Sarajevo we would love to  continue down the successful path and besides tennis and floor ball school establish additional sport schools in Sarajevo ,promote our program in Sarajevo through marketing and commercials, opening it to bigger number of kids and making it visible to general public. We would also like to increase in numbers of beneficiaries as so far operating has been oftentimes limited to certain amount of kids due to lack of free space where activities are taking place.

All activities of the Music and Media department is aimed at creating opportunities for cooperation, knowledge and expertise exchange, lobbying and networking nationally and internationally to create a positive, innovative, striving and nurturing environment for music and arts professionals thus securing future and new generations with qualitative education, easy access to modern note transcription materials in the field of classical music with stakeholder partners from both public and private sector field.

NGS, Azra Bogucanin