Syrian kids in a Sarajevo school, barriers are minimum

NEWS 22.09.2018 12:27
Source: N1

Syrian Saleh family has been in Sarajevo for five months now and it is their ambition to stay here. With the start of a new school year, their two children, Zain and Hamza, enrolled in the classes of a Sarajevo elementary school.

Hamza is a third-grade student. He speaks only a few of English and Bosnian words but the barriers in his relationship with other classmates are minimum. According to his mother, Naser Saleh, all they want is to forget about the war horrors they had escaped.

“When they’re playing with their toys – I hear bombs… They have a memory of that, I am trying to forget about those situations,” she said.

Amela Avdic, Hamza’s teacher, said his integration was going well.

“Hamza is one very bright boy, the children accepted him very well and they make no difference at all only because he came from another country. That’s another incentive for them to embrace and accept him. They share their meals and play together,” Avdic said.

The first Bosnian words they learned were ‘welcome’ and ‘thank you.’

“This is a period of their adaptation – learning Bosnian language, one step at a time. What matters is that they are safe and that here they don’t feel the trauma they experienced while coming from the war in Syria. They came to a school that wholeheartedly accepted them,” said school principal, Aida Omersoftic.

The Sarajevo school opened its door to the Saleh children. However, the future of their education and safety depends on the readiness of competent institutions not to close the door of permanent stay in Bosnia to the Saleh family.