The War Childhood Museum’s “Speaking Out” exhibition is dedicated to and co-produced with women survivors of conflict-related sexual violence, who were children and young people at the time, and children born of war.

Following last year’s openings in Sarajevo, Mostar, and Belgrade, “Speaking Out” returns to Sarajevo where it will be on view at the City Hall from December 5 to 9, as the central event of the campaign “Speaking Out For Legal Recognition of Children Born of War” started by the Forgotten Children of War Association.

In July 2022, children born of war were given the status of civilian victims of war within Brčko District, making it a symbolic, but important step toward addressing their needs. By Speaking Out together we once again highlight the rights and needs of children born of war and survivors of wartime sexual violence and call on the adoption of the Law on Civilian Victims of War in all of BiH.

The exhibition is set to open at the City Hall on Monday, December 5, at 12:00 (invitation only). Following the opening event, the exhibition will be on view for the public until Friday, December, 9, from 9:00 to 17:00.

Through personal stories, belongings, and video testimonies of survivors and children born of war, the exhibition foregrounds the manifold issues that these people face in everyday life, with the aim of raising awareness of their position in society today.

“Speaking Out” was preceded by several months’ work on documenting these experiences, and a body mapping workshop during which the survivors of wartime sexual violence conveyed their life experiences by using art as a medium. Through this process, the workshop participants worked on strengthening their individual capacities and affirming values, as it allowed them to observe their life in its entirety, and not solely through lived trauma.

As a part of the exhibition, all visitors will be able to see the Red Dress, the result of the 13-year, award-winning, global, collaborative embroidery project conceived by British artist Kirstie Macleod. The Red Dress carries the stories of 347 women and 7 men from 48 countries. Now, women survivors of wartime sexual violence whose experiences make up the “Speaking Out” exhibition will have the opportunity to add their own embroidery right before the opening event.

Contributing to the creation of the “Red Dress” were women refugees from Palestine, Syria, and Ukraine, asylum seekers, and civilian victims of war from various countries, as well as women living in poverty worldwide.

The exhibition is realized in cooperation with the International Organization for Migration, the Forgotten Children of War Association, the Wings of Hope Foundation, the Psiholab Association, and with the support of the EU Delegation in BiH and the UK Government.