They want to build the trust between the people in Bosnia, and begin the reconciliation process. The Center for Peacebuilding (CIM) works hard to reduce the rift between the population groups, caused by the war in the 1990s, and that Croats, Serbs and Bosnians can live together peacefully and neighborly.
Since Imam Vahidin Omanović won the Peace Award in 2011 of the schwelle Foundation (Peace Award 2011) a continuous collaboration connects us. The peace center established by him and his colleague Mevludin Rahmanović in 2004 – Center for Peacebuilding achieves exemplary works and has – partially through the Peace Award – stabilized and furthered to developed itself in the city of Sanski Most and the country of Bosnia-Herzegovina and beyond.
Even though the impression here in German is that the political situation in Bosnia is pacified, the partners in Bosnia however let us know otherwise. The individual population groups live more separated than before the war and national stereotypes dominate politics. In the census the people were supposed to attach themselves to one group and one religion of three (Bosnian, Serb, Croat) – other was not anticipated. Our partners find the situation with the parallel structured Republica Srbska as violence ridden conflicts and very dangerous.
So much more important is the hope brought by the peace work of CIM that reaches many young people and a big group of voluntary peace workers can be trained and involved. Many parents and important public people could be with the time, be recruited as support. An interfaith choir shows reconciliation in a musical way.
Just outside the city, on a large piece of land, they have built the Peace Farm. Lots of space for youth work, permaculture vegetable gardens and a large barbeque area to attract families. And seminar and office buildings.
Yearly CIM hosts a Peace Camp, in which young people of different ethnic background live and learn together. It takes courage to tell one another, in the presence of a trainer and a trusted atmosphere of violence and conflict experience and find a way together of understanding and finding a new way to be with each other. Another step is to venture into daily life with a new way of thinking, and to become a contributor to the camp the next year.