A spring clean-up was conducted at Modrac Lake in Tuzla, a north-eastern town of Bosnia and Herzegovina. Within several hours, the Centre for Ecology and Energy, the Scout Association ?Duga? and local community members had collected a dozen bags of waste. (UNV, 2011)

Think green, make clean

Hundreds of citizens in Bosnia and Herzegovina got together to celebrate World Environment Day on June 5th. United Nations agencies, ministries, municipalities, towns, schools and NGOs around the country organized clean-ups, exhibitions and cultural events.

Hundreds of citizens in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) got together to celebrate World Environment Day on June 5th. To mark this occasion, United Nations agencies, ministries, municipalities, towns, schools and non-governmental organizations around the country organized clean-ups of parks, squares, school yards and picnic areas, as well as exhibitions and various cultural events.

In the northern town of Bihac, citizens and members of the NGO Emeralds of Una (River) engaged in a clean-up activity organized by the municipality and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) under the slogan ‘Think green, make clean’. All those who joined were given clean-up kits prepared by UNDP. Under the same slogan, World Environment Day 2011 was also marked in the southern municipality of Stolac, which organized the clean-up of a local river bank involving numerous volunteers, local fishermen and staff of the local utility company. In an area of about half a square kilometre, citizens collected garbage, cleared away mud that had piled up during the floods and removed other debris, later transporting it all to the town’s waste disposal site. In Sarajevo, United Nations Volunteers joined UN staff and a small group of citizens to clean up two children’s parks located in Sarajevo’s most popular walking area, the Vilsonovo Alley. At the same time, a local Association for Development and Affirmation of Society (BNL) held an environmental competition at the city’s main square. This event successfully mobilized a large number of participants in gathering discarded plastic bottles and plastic bags. The Centre for Ecology and Energy in the north-eastern town of Tuzla conducted a spring clean-up at the nearby Modrac Lake. This project was further supported by the contributions of members of the local community and the Scout Association ‘Duga’. Within several hours, they had collected a dozen bags of waste dispersed around the lake area, built four tables and benches and mounted notice boards asking citizens to preserve nature.

The Scouts in Trebinje, located in the south of BiH, celebrated World Environment Day by cleaning up parks, the Trebisnjica River bank and forests surrounding the town. In addition, children from local kindergartens prepared a cultural event focusing on the need to adequately dispose of waste. In the cultural centre of the Pale municipality east of Sarajevo, youth prepared an ecology-focused performance under the slogan of ‘Wake up world’. This event was attended by young ecologists from local primary schools, children from kindergartens and the volunteer-based ‘Sunce’ Association for children with special needs.

World Environment Day was also marked in the north-western city of Banja Luka. At the main city’s square, a large number of children from four primary schools presented essays and drawings on the topic ‘Imagine that you are a tree in the forest’ to citizens gathered there.

In the eastern part of the country, in Srebrenica, World Environment Day 2011 was celebrated on 3 June as part of the UNDP project ‘Biomass energy for employment and energy security’. In cooperation with the NGO ‘Centar za razvoj i podrsku’ (Centre for development and support) and teachers and students from elementary and high schools from Bratunac, Srebrenica and Mili?i, UNDP organized a school exhibition and competition under the banner ‘We know how to preserve the climate’. The event aimed to raise awareness of the wider public in the Srebrenica region about climate change and renewable energy sources - especially the benefits of using renewable energy sources - by presenting children’s creative and motivating ideas and artwork.

Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina