Press Release

Meet the Youth Champions engaging in Social Media 4 Peace in Bosnia and Herzegovina!

02 June 2022

Three digital communication experts from Bosnia and Herzegovina, Nikola, Robert and Safet are joining UNESCO’s project Social Media 4 Peace as Youth Champions.

Digital platforms including social media have proven to be critical in enabling inclusive and participatory dialogue. UNESCO’s project Social Media 4 Peace funded by the European Union, and UNESCO Antenna in Bosnia and Herzegovina have established cooperation with three experts passionate about digital communication and peacebuilding as Youth Champions.

Acting as voices of Youth, they will engage their social media community to raise awareness on the challenges in relation to freedom of expression online, how to contribute to the curbing of harmful content and promoting peace narratives on social media.

Meet the Youth Champions below!

Nikola Lero

“I hope that my participation to the Social Media 4 Peace project will open a space for a new wave of young digital creators from BiH who understand that peace is a crucial part of their culture.

Nikola is a young writer, researcher, and journalist from Bosnia and Herzegovina (Facebook, Instagram). He has previously worked with several international organizations and media including the European Parliament, the OSCE, UNICEF and the Bosnian Youth Magazine. Nikola has won the Erasmus + Young Journalist Award in 2017 for spreading democratic values among young people and was nominated Best Blogger for promoting responsible use of social media. His motto “by engraving letters I search for the truth” is what made Nikola a writer with a broad community of followers on Facebook and Instagram. His online essays and  poetry singled him out as a creative voice of young Bosnians and Herzgovinians, a community he wants to reach out more by engaging in UNESCO's Social Media 4 Peace project.

He is currently preparing the publication of his first collection of poetry as a member of the literary collective "Književna Zadruga".

Robert Dacešin

„I will use my community on social media to help raise awareness of young people in the country and help spread more peaceful messages.“

Travel aficionado, Robert enjoys to share his passion with his 160,000 followers on Instagram, YouTube and Facebook, on his blog and his TV show. For his work in the promotion of his city, he has received a special reward from the mayor of Banja Luka and his video on the topic of “Why Bosnia and Herzegovina can be number 1 touristic destination in the world” has one the first prize on a world-famous Japanese film festival. He wrote four travel books, two of which are about his own country and places people can visit when they come to Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Working in digital marketing, Robert will make the most of his communicator skills to engage his audience in the Social Media 4 Peace project.

His videos about his country, have generated more than 6 million views on YouTube so far and Robert believes that creating several more videos that would share positive message and stories, would promote the values of UNESCO's Social Media 4 Peace project.

Safet Kubat

“By joining the Social Media 4 Peace project, I want to create online safe spaces for communities and prevent destructive forces from dominating the social media environments.”

Third year PhD student at the University of Sarajevo and digital media manager, Safet is interested in the social media algorithm, technology, and media. Safet has gained experience in managing online platforms and promoting public health campaigns through digital channels for many years.

For over two years, he has been managing the Facebook group Rijeke Bosnia and Herzegovina with around 56,000 members which was declared the Champion of Environmental Protection in BiH in 2021 and is running again this year for the title. The Facebook group’s achievements include: 70,000 trees planted, over 77,000 fishes released into rivers, and over 3,000 cleaning actions performed. They have also published over 2,500 eco-tourism materials for promotion, with millions of views, and over 2 million comments.

The Facebook group is an example that social media can have positive and long-standing impacts. By motivating large numbers of people to take actions, Safet believes social media can widely spread peaceful and nonviolent narratives online.

More on the Social Media 4 Peace project:

Funded by the European Union, the project Social Media 4 Peace aims to strengthen the resilience of societies to potential harmful content spread online, in particular hate speech inciting to violence, while enhancing the promotion of peace through digital technologies, notably social media, in three pilot countries: Bosnia and Herzegovina, Indonesia and Kenya.

Meet the Youth Champions engaging in Social Media 4 Peace in Bosnia and Herzegovina!

UN entities involved in this initiative

UNESCO
United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization

Other entities involved in this initiative

EC-FPI
European Commission - Service for Foreign Policy Instruments

Goals we are supporting through this initiative