The “Forgotten Children of War” Association was given the “Cesena City for Peace” Award for standing out in the defense of human rights and the promotion of peace in the past year, by the Municipality of Cesena in cooperation with the “Ernesto Balducci” Peace Center. The prize, which is awarded every year on the occasion of Human Rights Day, the advisor for culture and inclusion of the Municipality of Cesena, Mr. Carlo Verona, handed to Senedin Hrnjica, a member of our team.
The Municipality of Cesena awarded the Association as a sign of solidarity with children born of war and women survivors of Conflict-Related Sexual Violence (CRSV) and as a support in realizing the rights and needs of this vulnerable social category.
The ceremony was attended by the citizens of Cesena who had the opportunity to see the exhibition BREAKING FREE in their city, as well as representatives of ISCOS Emilia-Romagna, our partners, and friends with whom we have been setting up the exhibition throughout Italy for many years.
During our stay in Cesena, we also visited the “Vincenzo Monti” Gymnasium, meeting with professors and students.
Students learned more about the breakup of the former Yugoslavia, how the war started, and how it ended. We discussed the consequences of sexual violence as a weapon of war – children born of war, including the inevitable categories of children of peacemakers and humanitarian workers. We explained how the legal and social invisibility decades after the war culminated in the need to form an Association that would represent its members in every respect.
We presented them with the work of the “Forgotten Children of the War” Association. We introduced them to our artistic programs, powerful tools in the fight for the social visibility of children born of war, such as the play “In the Name of the Father” and the exhibition “Breaking Free”, which was exposed in Cesena during the fall.
We highlighted an example of good practice from Bosnia and Herzegovina, the new Law in the Federation, which recognized children born of war for the first time in the history of our country as a special category of civilian victims of war and was passed through persistent efforts of the Association.
We talked with high school students about the enormous importance of preventing CRSV. In the end, we noted the individual and collective responsibility for raising awareness about this war crime which, unfortunately, is still being committed all over the world, and about the importance of legal recognition of children born of war in all conflict and post-conflict societies.