Sarajevo: Visit of the Governor of Upper Austria, Dr. Josef Pühringer

On Monday, 30th March 2015, the Governor of Upper Austria, Dr. Josef Pühringer, together with a delegation of 25 members of the province of Upper Austria, paid a visit to the HOPE’87 project « Rehabilitation and social integration for the youth in BiH : a community approach to rehabilitation and integration » in Sarajevo, Bosnia-Herzegovina. The Austrian delegation visited Bosnia-Herzegovina as there are many economic ties between the two countries. As the HOPE’87 project in support of people with disabilities, mine victims etc. was co-financed by the province of Upper Austria, the delegation asked to include a visit to the project in the schedule.

The overall objective of the HOPE’87 project is to improve the opportunities of people with disabilities (civil war and mine victims and specifically disadvantaged young people) in order to facilitate a physical and intellectual participation in the socio-economic life in Bosnia- Herzegovina.

Moreover, the project supports many activities to expand the medical-technical and the medical-psychological know-how of the staff. These activities include special training for health care professionals in the field of rehabilitation techniques as well as courses for further training of psychologists, psychiatrists and social workers concerning the prevention and early diagnosis of mental functional disorders.

The Secretary-General of HOPE’87, Mr. Robert Ottitsch, as well as the Assistant Secretary-General and Representative of the HOPE’87-Upper Austria Group, Dr. Maisa Khalil, joined the Austrian delegation in Sarajevo. Together with Ms. Zana Karkin-Musić, the former Country Representative of HOPE’87 BiH and Mr. Fikret Karkin, Senior Advisor of HOPE’87 they welcomed Dr. Pühringer and his delegation at the « House of HOPE » in Sarajevo. This building includes a well-equipped polyclinic for medical assistance and educational facilities catering to the requirements of the disadvantaged people.

After a short presentation of the HOPE’87 BiH staff there was a small guided tour through the HOPE’87 Polyclinic and the Education Center.

Subsequently, a series of short presentations were held. The Deputy Minister of the Federal Ministry of Health BiH, Dr. Goran Cerkez, welcomed the Governor and the delegation.

Univ. Prof. Dr. Muftic Mirsad, Coordinator of CBR for the Federation BiH, presented the project « Support for persons with disabilities in BiH: building capacities of the Community-Based Rehabilitation Centers (CBR) and the Community Mental Health Centers (CMH) » that was co-funded by Upper Austria.

Additionally, the Secretary General, Mr. Ottitsch, made some remarks about the project and highlighted the work of HOPE’87 in Bosnia-Herzegovina during the past 20 years.

Due to the tight time schedule, the Governor had only little time left to conclude with a personal note before he had to continue with the mission. Altogether, it was a very interesting morning for the HOPE’87 BiH-Team, as well as for the HOPE’87 HQ Vienna and hopefully also for the Governor of Upper Austria and his delegation.