Author: Eldina Besovic
Within the ‘Children’s House’, located in the Grbavicka b.b. Street in the Sarajevo’s district of Grbavica, there is the most modern library for children and youth that one can find in the entire City of Sarajevo.
The library is by far the most beautiful area for children and young people within the ‘Children’s House’. Compared to other libraries operated by the public company ‘Library of the City of Sarajevo’, this is the most modern facility that has the inviting vibe and it looks like a carefully devised alternative in the era when children and young people tend to spend most of their time inside of their homes, playing video games or watching TV.
As you enter the library, there are several ottomans in bright colors and in different geometric shapes and this is a kind of an informal area, where visitors can sit and read books, but also take their jackets off and leave them on a nearby hanger. Some walls in the library are painted in yellow, bookshelves are arranged asymmetrically and visitors can walk and choose books that they want. In one corner, there is a small sitting-area, where children can sit, read books or simply draw as the library provides crayons and paper for smaller children. On the other side of the room, big windows bring in the necessary natural daylight and offer a view at the nearby children playground and trees in the Wilson’s Promenade.
According to the Head of the Library Department in the ‘Children’s House’ Jasmina Klico Hasanagic, the library offers 20 reading seats, where children up to 10 years of age can come accompanied by their parents, while teenagers can visit the facility on their own.
Klico Hasanagic explained that the library organized workshops for children aged 4-7 each Thursday at 10:00 hrs and on Saturdays, but only in case of previously-arranged visits. She added that aside from these types of workshops, they organized workshops for older children aged 10-14 on Tuesdays.
As of September 2019, the library began with organized visits of kindergartens and schools from the area of the Sarajevo. “The goal of the organized visits of kindergartens is to teach children about the importance of the reading habit”, said Klico Hasanagic.
Aside from workshops organized during the winter school break in January, Klico Hasanagic announced that the library would organize workshops during the summer of 2020. She noted that other institutions could also contact them and arrange educational activities for children and youth, the way organization ‘Dogs Trust Bosnia and Herzegovina’ organized Saturday’s workshop for children during the winter school break in January.
Furthermore, Klico Hasanagic said that the 120-square-meters library offered some 8,000 books for children and youth and aside from picture books and glossaries for pre-school children, the library also offered a large selection of children’s literature and comic books.
Users also have e-Book readers and micro: bits at disposal and thus, young people have the opportunity to learn about basics of programming. For English language speakers, the library offers a modest fund of children’s books in English language, including some bilingual books.
The library is open from 09:00 until 17:00 hours during working days, as well as between 09:00 and 14:00 hrs on Saturdays. Visitors can learn all information about activities of the library from the library’s staff that is more than willing to offer any kind of help. Contact number is +387 33 81 10 10, while all other information about the library can be found on the official website of the public company ‘Library of the City of Sarajevo’.