Advocate Highlight

Thursday, November 18, 2021

Kemal Pervanic, who attended the 2012 Human Rights Advocates Program, and Project V Architecture of the UK recently won the silver prize for Europe from the the Swiss Lafarge-Holcim Foundation for Sustainable Construction for their project Restoring Common Ground in Prijedor, Bosnia and Herzegovina. The project involves the construction of a permanent peace center between two ethnically separated villages in Prijedor in the northwestern part of the country: Kevljani and Petrovo Gaj, near the former Omarska concentration camp.

"This is a victory for all peace builders in Bosnia and Herzegovina. We created a community around the project before it was built; a community that cooperates, learns, and influences decision-making in a democratic way. This recognition is indispensable at a time when political leaders have failed to build sustainable peace in the last two and a half decades," said Kemal, who is the founder and director of Most Mira (Bridge of Peace) and a survivor of two concentration camps during the Bosnian war. Through art and education projects, Most Mira has worked with over 1,500 young  Serbs, Muslims, Croats, Roma and others, as well as their teachers and parents, to promote peace in Bosnia & Herzegovina. The award includes a trophy and $50,000 in financial support that will contribute to the construction of the peace center, which is scheduled to begin in 2022.