Bicycles are the most frequent means of transportation in Sombor, and one of the reasons that gave rise to the project “Bicycles for Smiles” – an idea aiming to bring smiles to some people’s faces, and to stimulate others to be humane. Jelena Štulić, speaking before the team of supervolunteers from the association Centre for Community Development LINK from Sombor, told the Youth Umbrella Organization of Serbia (KOMS) how these young people were those ready to become empowered in manufacturing skills, to learn more about restoration and to express their creativity, but also to be humane and promote activism among their fellow citizens:
How was the “Bicycles for Smiles” project created?
– Since we had been volunteering for a number of years in several organizations in Sombor, we wanted to initiate and start a larger-scale activity in our local community. We thought for a long time about what this could be and who we could help. All of our discussions about potential ideas and activism mostly happened on bicycles. We concluded that the idea was “in front of our noses” the whole time. Thus Dušan Vorkapić and I slowly started to shape the idea that in the end turned into the project “Bicycles for Smiles” – one of the ten winners of the Superste competition for 2018, organized by Erste Bank Serbia. (…)
What were the most successful activities under this project?
– Currently, we consider the most successful activities to be all those implemented during the restoration phase. Until a day ago we couldn’t even change the tires of a bicycle, while today we have ten completely functional bikes ready for their new owners. In the spring we will hold a public auction, and thereafter the funds will be donated to the Home for Children and Youth without Parental Care “Miroslav Mika Antić” in Sombor, giving the project its true meaning. (…)
Why is activism important and what was your motive?
– Activism is what propels us. Through activism we change all that we think is not good. It provides us with a special feeling that cannot be compared to anything. It is wonderful to know that YOU are the change in the world and that it is precisely YOU who can change someone’s world for the better. You cannot put a price on this and it will leave a permanent mark on someone, somewhere.
The author of the text is Anja Babinka. The article in its entirety can be found at koms.rs