A Second Living Room: the Public Library Zavidovići's Youth Corner

In Bosnia and Herzegovinia, many students commute from rural communities every day by bus to attend school in town. For young students, this often means long hours waiting for buses with nothing to do.

Located just next to a bus station, the librarians at the Zavidovići Public Library realised that the students waiting for the buses were spending their time unproductively every day after school.

Winner of the library's photo competition. Photo by Eldar Muhic.

Winner of the library's photo competition. Photo by Eldar Muhic, republished from the library's facebook page.

This realisation led to the creation of a space in the local library dedicated to these children, addressing this problem of long hours spent waiting for buses. To attract the young people and to teach new skills, the initiated a multi-media centre with creative programming that would be open before and after school, with access to computers the Internet, and technology skills trainings – supported by the iNGO EIFL. They have also had events to engage students and promote the project, such a photo competition.

The librarians call the Youth Corner a “second living room” for many children. It attracts a broad mix of students, including young refugees from Syria, who spend time with local students and are learning Bosnian. Through the library, these students can more easily socialize.

The Youth Corder - republished with permission from Zavidovići Public Library.

The Youth Corner – republished with permission from Zavidovići Public Library.

Since the beginning of the Youth Corner, the number of visits to the library has increased from 50 people a week to 252, after one year.

A short video explaining the local situation and the students’ responses to the Youth Corner:

You can follow the library on their Facebook page.

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