UN Festival #ZamisliPromijeni / #ImagineChange gathers almost a hundred participants and thousands of citizens
24 October 2021
United Nations Day marked with the very first UN Festival in Bosnia and Herzegovina, celebrating heroes of positive changes across the country.
More environmental protection, life without conflicts, true respect for human rights, better perspectives and more employment opportunities – that is the future that the people of Bosnia and Herzegovina imagine in 25 years from now.
By promoting culture, creativity and creation, innovation and entrepreneurship, equality but also diversity, heritage, art and ecology, the United Nations (UN) in Bosnia and Herzegovina marked its day with the #ImagineChange Festival at the Zemaljski muzej in Sarajevo. Twenty selected participants of the fair, youth bands, musicians, chefs, animators and poets – all partners of UN agencies, funds and programs in BiH, who are actively working on positive changes in their local communities and beyond, made a visit to the Zemaljski muzej an unforgettable and different experience for thousands of citizens. Participants of the #ImagineChange Festival came from different cities and municipalities all across Bosnia and Herzegovina.
The partnership between the United Nations in BiH and the Zemaljski muzej provided free entrance to the Museum from October 21st to 24th, celebrating the UN Day. More importantly, it reminded citizens that the treasury of the Museum is safeguarding traces of the rich past and the cultural heritage of Bosnia and Herzegovina, so they responded to the invitation to visit in large numbers.
”2021 was a challenging year for the world, including for so many of the people that the United Nations works with in Bosnia and Herzegovina. But through our work across BiH, we continue to see innovators, entrepreneurs, change makers, activists, and everyday people, working tirelessly to positively contribute to the development of their communities and the country. Some of these people and organizations - impressive change makers - joined us to celebrate the UN Day and showcase the many possibilities which exist across this country. They are the people who are paving the way towards gender equality and the empowerment of women; quality education; entrepreneurship and youth start-ups; climate action and environmental protection; healthy aging; food production and security and agricultural development, and much more. They are imagining change and making it happen. At this challenging time, when political rhetoric takes so much public space, it’s important to highlight the many positive voices and actions that happen every day, and to move past divisive narratives. We hope that they can be an inspiration to all”, said dr. Ingrid Macdonald, the United Nations Resident Coordinator in BiH.
This year's UN Day is marked under the slogan #ImagineChange in Bosnia and Herzegovina, which celebrates all those heroes and changemakers who are, step by step, initiating positive changes in their communities, but it also invites all of us to imagine and work on changes that are important to us.
Radomirka Alić, the founder of a small family business - Cafe Confectionery "Slatki zalogaj" Srebrenica was among the exhibitors. Great attendance and interest in Radomirka's stand marked the very beginning of the Festival.
"Participation in the Festival is a great honor and joy. I am positively surprised and I did not expect that there would be so many people, and that they would like our program so much, part of which we brought for tasting. I am happy to have had the opportunity to work with the United Nations through the ”Biz Up” program late last year. We started our business with two goals - the first is to provide a job, and the second is to create a place in Srebrenica where everyone can gather, where it doesn't matter who you are or what you are - a place that breaks down prejudices and stereotypes 365 days a year."
The moderation duo of the Festival were Haris Bilalović and Aida Vehabović - a seventeen-year-old girl from Kakanj, an award-winning actress who breaks down prejudices and who says:
“It is a great honour to be invited to co-host the United Nations birthday program and I am happy to write down in my memory book yet another striking event with the UN. My most important message is that young people should be given opportunities to stay here in Bosnia and Herzegovina, because we too can create and work like other countries if we make a change. The world remains with us young people, and if we start to change what doesn’t suit us, it will be a fantastic proof that we are doing well. From the sustainable development goals, I would single out education in the first place - education and practical work. Of course, everything depends on us young people and I hope that we will be able to make changes and that future generations will have more quality education."
United Nations agencies, funds and programs have promoted cooperation with people, companies, organizations and institutions throughout Bosnia and Herzegovina, which they support in creating and implementing change in their communities, in cooperation with their international partners and donors.
The United Nations in Bosnia and Herzegovina is thankful to the UN agencies and partners: Nevid teatar, Muzička škola Banja Luka, AIESEC, Vjeko Kramer, youth bands Zelene oči, Krx, AMD and VuciBAtine who are working jointly in Srebrenica, Bratunac and Vlasenica, and also to Balkantina Sarajevo, SOR Narcis Posušje, Outdoor/Aquabalkan Konjic, NVO Genesis and UPSHIFT, the band Deminutiv, Healthy Aging Center Novo Sarajevo, coffee confectionery Slatki zalogaj Srebrenica, chocolate shop Bashka, BHWI Foundation, IOM Fashion Corner, Disaster Risk Reduction Program for Sustainable Development, IT Girls Initiative and all other participants of the Festival who have enriched the program and who imagine and change their environment for the better every day.