This project was an outcome of meetings between representatives of HWA, UNHCR, Vasa Prava Gorazde, the Association of Women Victim of War Sarajevo and Women Victims of War who are currently living in Gorazde and Praca. As these women have lived through real horror they were manifesting withdrawal, avoidance of contacts, anxiety which grows into panic, depressive and sub depressive moods. The representative of Vasa Prava has been working for some time with this group of women victim of war and with her assistance HWA/UNHCR met with the women and interviewed them.
Working on preparation of this project proposal and listening to the painful life stories of these women deeply touched our feelings and left strong impression on our souls. Each of these abused women went through a serious narcissistic traumatism, a traumatism of identity and self-respect. The psychic life of them is dominated by feelings of victimization, shame, and guilt. The physical health of these women is ruined. Social and psychological pressure was also directed towards the degradation of personality through the destruction of basic human dignity. This kind of ill-treatment devastates feelings of security and self-respect and leads to the questioning of life's meaning and of existence.
Through our very careful approach the women expressed their wishes regarding which kind of assistance they needed. They have been supported as follows:
• 9 of them expressed need for household machines (electric ovens, refrigerators, washing machines, sawing machines). Delivery of 8 washing machines, 9 electric ovens, 9 refrigerators completed on August 7th, 2009.
• One very creative woman expressed need for wood processing tools, sawing machine with iron and ironing desk for household needs and a laptop computer for designing and presentation of her products. She finished the secondary school for wood processing and her hobby is upholstering furniture and making of various items of wood and other kinds of material. Delivered wood processing machine and equipment on September 23rd, 2009.
• 3 laptops with the printers have been delivered on September 23rd, 2009. One beneficiary expressed extreme need for the laptop to use it for internet communication with her children who are abroad because they were taken from her during the war. One need a laptop for advertising and marketing her hand made wood products and one women needed it for her daughter who studies in Sarajevo but lives in Gorazde and needs internet connection for the University.
• 2 plastic green-houses have been purchased and delivered on September 17th, 2009.
• 2 motor-cultivators with attachments purchased and delivered on October 30th, 2009
• One hairdresser who works in her own hairdresser’s shop (one part of equipments was donated through the Association of women victim of war in Sarajevo), she was assisted with hair dryer and accessories in order to make services in her hairdresser’s shop easer and quicker. The delivery and montage of a hairdryer completed on October 10th, 2009.
• 7 of them expressed need for sewing machines with iron. Based on our previous experiences and works with this extremely vulnerable group of women we organized for them a sewing course in Gorazde. We engaged the professional tailor who conducted sewing lessons, purchased sewing material and accessories for sewing articles. In frame of this project with our and UNHCR assistance the group participated at selling exhibition organized by International Women’s Club’s (IWCS) which was held on December 13th, 2009 in Dom Mladih named “2009 HOLIDAY SPIRIT BAZAAR” and in “Merkator Shoping Center” on December 20th, 2009. (The group of women from Ilijas participated as well). The course and team work was a kind of psycho-social therapy and socialization for this extremely vulnerable group of women. This kind of support for this group of women is constantly needed.
The local authorities considered this group of women victim of war is very vulnerable group and the project was co-financed by Ministry for Social Politics, Health, DPs and Refugees Bosnian-Podrinje Canton Goražde.
The number of primary beneficiaries included in this project was 14 families / 42 persons