|How to act||
Culture, Structural support, Youth
Amsterdam, Bosnia and Herzegovina, London, Mostar, Netherlands, UK
1993, 1994, 1995
War Child was a charity organisation created in 1993 in the UK, as a reaction against the violence in Bosnia and Herzegovina and the apathy and inaction of political leaders in the West. In order to attract attention to the situation in BiH and to collect donations to help children in BiH, War Child was especially active in the field of music and cooperated with pop stars. The album “Help” was made in 1995 on initiative and for the benefits of “War Child” and included tracks by Oasis & Friends (including Johnny Depp), Blur, Radiohead, Manic Street Preachers, Massive Attack and Sinead O’Connor ; the album became an immediate success and raised more than 1 million British Pound. Besides organizing convoys, “War Child” also set up a mobile bakery in Mostar in 1994 that produced thousands of loaves of bread per day, and organized music therapy workshops for children, developed and led especially by the British composer and activist Nigel Osborne. These workshops were the first step towards the establishment of the “Pavarotti Center”, which was opened in 1997 in a former school building in Mostar, with the support of Lucianao Pavarotti and others, to offer regular creative and educational activities as well as clinical music therapy to children and young people.
Another initiative launched by the group was the construction of the “Pavarotti Centre” in Mostar. The centre opened in 1997, but it was already active during the war, organizing various activities, for example music therapy workshops for children, with Brian Eno and Nigel Osborne.
More “War Child” organisations were founded in other countries, for example in the Netherlands in 1995 by the peace activist Willemijn Verloop. Based on the experience with the music therapy activities in Bosnia and Herzegovina, War Child Holland then developed similar programmes for children in other countries affected by war.