human development, social justice and sustainable social systems

Caritas Slovenia visits reception camp

Migrants in Ušivak remind us that the sky has no borders

Migrants from the reception camp sent a message to everyone: The sky has no borders!

During their regular monitoring of the project for Empowerment of women in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Jana Lampe, Alen Salihović and Meta Černoga from Caritas Slovenia visited on 10 May 2019 the refugee camp Ušivak in Hadžići, situated just 15km from Sarajevo. The aim of the visit was for Caritas Slovenia to inform about the migrant situation in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

The manager of the camp, Stevan Jugović from IOM (International Organization for Migration), gave an overview of the current situation with a special focus on Ušivak camp. Besides problems and visible needs for basic necessities such as food, hygiene, social activities and medical care in camp, Stevan also presented the human side of this story. The migrants from Pakistan, Afghanistan, Syria, Iraq, Iran, Morocco, Ukraine, Kazakhstan and other countries have only one common goal: a better life! All of them are fleeing from poverty, war, hunger and disorganized relationships in their country of origin.

The fear of continued exposure to these threats drive them forward. The road they have been crossing is not easy. Very often, they arrive at reception camps injured, exhausted thirsty and hungry. The camp staff take care of them with support from different agencies and organizations committed to work at the camp, including Caritas. During the visit, Stevan mentioned how grateful he was of Caritas’ contribution which came at the most critical moment and remained consistent by providing the same amount of support throughout the following months. He mentioned staff members like Josip Dugandžić from Caritas Archdiocese Vrhbosna, Kristina Bičvić and Dijana Muzička from Caritas Bosnia and Herzegovina, with whom he has been in close contact from the day Ušivak was established.

During the tour, our Slovenian partners saw young boys playing football or table tennis age 15 to 18… An older brother caring for his young baby sister, walking through the camp. Our partners talked with them for a while and were impressed with their smiles and enthusiasm. They told them their story about the long journey which brought them to Bosnia and Herzegovina. These stories cannot leave anyone indifferent. Before the end of the visit, migrants sent a message to everyone: The Sky has no borders!