Preservation of the native language and identity of the children of citizens of Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) in the world through supplementary schools of BiH and cultural activities is one of the most important projects in the BiH diaspora.
President of the Association of Supplementary Schools of BiHin the Diaspora, based in Germany, and Vice President of the World Association of the Diaspora of BiH, Haris Halilovic, a prominent activist in BiH diaspora, spoke about the importance of the project of Bosnian supplementary schools in the diaspora, the problems they face, the support of BiH, the interest of parents and children from BiH for supplementary education in the Bosnian language and the relationship between the state and the diaspora.
He believes that when we give up on preserving our native language and identity, all ties with our children’s homeland or country of origin end, and what we get is assimilation and being lost in other people’s worlds.
”I hope, in fact I firmly believe that this will never happen, that the majority of the two million citizens of BiH who live outside its borders are aware of this and that we will preserve our language, identity and ties with our homeland, wherever we live in the world. That is our moral, human obligation,” explainedHalilovic.
Preserving our language and our culture does not prevent us from adjusting to life in new environments, but it helps us not to assimilate, and not merge with a new environment.
”By using it, we show that we are determined to nurture our culture in our native language, no matter where we are in the world. In this way, our native language, the Bosnian language, also protects us from physical disappearance. A popular saying says: If my language disappears – my people will disappear too! Here I would like to highlight the interesting fact that most of those who call us every day and ask how and where their children can enroll in a Bosnian school are people who have come from BiH in the last few years and have children of school–age,” told Halilovic.