International Youth Day: Can You Hear Us?!

On 12 August, at 11:55 hours, the Institute for Youth Development KULT organised a symbolic performance in front of the Cathedral thus celebrated the International Youth Day. This date, which is of significant importance to young people all around the world, is celebrated in most of the countries by singing, dancing and socializing. Since the position of youth in BiH does not reflect the situation which could be accompanied by any suitable festive celebration of this date, the Institute decided to organise a symbolic gathering of young people that would be bursting with messages conveying the problems of youth and which would once again draw public attention to the fact that we have rushed in at the eleventh hour. After gathering in front of the Cathedral and the official start of the performance, the participants, numerous media representatives and the citizens headed towards the Eternal Flame where the final part of this short symbolic performance took place. During this 10-minute long gathering, clear messages were sent to the public and BiH authorities.

There are many youth issues in our country. More than 70% of young people want to go abroad, for good or for a longer period eagerly wishing to stay there for the rest of their lives. “Let them go if they want; they do nothing but sip coffee all day long!” is something that you hear as a common response from older persons if you ask them what they think of young people leaving the country. They are lazy, can’t do anything, do not want to study, are parasites living at the expense of their parents – these are the qualifications that are increasingly being attributed to young people in our society. There is some truth in all of this, but things should certainly be considered causally. Should we dare to think that previous generations were God-given and were diligent and hard-working, or was there a system which accepted them giving them the necessary directions? Indeed, there was a system that offered them proper education, preparation for a job and consequently provided them with a job. School clubs, youth hostels, sports clubs and the like, offered them additional opportunities needed for their development. Student services gave them the opportunity to earn pocket money and afford cheap vacations, and their parents did not have the need to expect at all costs a business engagement of their children “the day after getting a diploma,” because they were economically stable. Strong families, at least much stronger than they are today, were not making a large space for “youthful manoeuvres,” so young people had a fairly straight path.

And today?

Why do they spend time drinking coffee? – It is because they can’t afford a glass of juice. Why are they are lazy? – It is because their country has not shown them that the effort is worthwhile? They are not capable of working? – This is because the educational system has not thought them to develop good work habits although it should have. They do not study? – This is because the labour market is making fun of what they learned in school. They live like parasites at their parents’ expense? – This is because they do not have anyone who would take care of them and the government is not providing them with any assistance.

Today’s performance was supported by the Association NARKO No, Youth Council of the Municipality of Stari Grad, UNFPA Y-Peer, Educational-Leisure Centre for Youth SPAJALICA, as well as by many other individuals from the cities across BiH.

Six major TV stations, 27 radio stations, three news agencies, three largest daily newspapers and tenths of internet portals have supported this event. Without this media support, this story would not have had such a strength. Therefore – THANK YOU FOR ALL YOUR SUPPORT!


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