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Tellers Without Borders Conference Report Words in a Treasure Chest

5 – 7 October 2018 in Sarajevo By Martin Manasse, storyteller, U.K.

Tellers With­out Bor­ders is a net­work of pro­fes­sion­al and ama­teur sto­ry­tellers who have joined togeth­er to offer heal­ing through sto­ry­telling. The ini­tia­tive was found­ed by sto­ry­teller Micaela Sauber who has since been joined by sto­ry­tellers work­ing across bor­ders in Europe and the Mid­dle East to reach lis­ten­ers in need of sto­ries of reas­sur­ance.
“We tell sto­ries to peo­ple in war zones and in peace­ful areas, for com­fort, heal­ing and encour­age­ment of spir­it.”
The 2018 Con­fer­ence was pre­ced­ed and fol­lowed by tours for del­e­gates in Sara­je­vo and the area around and includ­ing Mostar and we learned much about the war in the 1990s, the local his­to­ry and strong spir­it of the peo­ple who took great pride in their abil­i­ty to live in peace togeth­er regard­less of eth­nic­i­ty or faith. All is not yet restored in terms of this uni­ty but the desire to recre­ate it is strong.
Most­ly we were led by the inde­fati­ga­ble Micaela but on oth­er occa­sions she found us excel­lent and very infor­ma­tive local guides. We were giv­en won­der­ful hos­pi­tal­i­ty, trans­port­ed around the stun­ning­ly beau­ti­ful coun­try­side by a superb team of dri­vers and we learned a lot about the hor­rors of the con­flict and won­ders that the area had to offer.



In the Con­fer­ence itself, we were treat­ed to a fas­ci­nat­ing­ly var­ied pro­gramme of infor­ma­tive talks, work­shops and round table ses­sions. I, like every oth­er del­e­gate, was only able to attend one of the work­shops but mine was out­stand­ing and I learned from my col­leagues that they had excel­lent expe­ri­ences too. The descrip­tions of the work­shops and round table ses­sions in the pro­gramme are append­ed below. The atten­dance was splen­did. We were around 60 del­e­gates from 20 coun­tries, most­ly from Europe.
We were greet­ed on Fri­day evening by a delight­ful per­for­mance by a children’s choir before being wel­comed by Maria Ser­ra­no and giv­en a resume of what lay before us.
Ivanir Sibyl­la Has­son then lead us through a joy­ful warm up before we heard an intro­duc­to­ry address from Micaela and Amela Sehal­ic our Bosn­ian host and leader of her edu­ca­tion­al ini­tia­tive DUGA (Rain­bow).
After sup­per we were treat­ed to a feast of sto­ries from Emi­na Kam­ber, Gau­ri Raje, Ivanir, Maria, and Alexan­der Macken­zie.
On Sat­ur­day, the ple­nary ses­sion pri­or to the work­shops was a fas­ci­nat­ing talk from Dr. Mar­tin Straube about trau­ma, its impact on the human con­sti­tu­tion and health, and how sto­ry­telling with a focus on deal­ing with trau­ma could be rel­e­vant for chil­dren and young peo­ple. The ways in which trau­ma can suc­ces­sive­ly inhib­it or even “paral­yse” and can then be undone grad­u­al­ly through use of sto­ry pro­vid­ed us with valu­able infor­ma­tion about our art.
Between the two Sat­ur­day work­shop ses­sions Alexan­der Macken­zie intro­duced us to his book
“Hum­bert Bear Likes to doze” which he designed and wrote for chil­dren in hos­pices and which is giv­en to them free of charge. It has been such a suc­cess that it is cur­rent­ly avail­able in sev­er­al lan­guages and more trans­la­tions are on the way. There is a Kick­starter fund­ing pro­gramme which may be accessed online to raise mon­ey for the pro­duc­tion costs.
There was also the first of the round table ses­sion of which details are append­ed below.
After the final work­shop ses­sions, we enjoyed sup­per and a feast of sto­ries from a vari­ety of our del­e­gates. A high­ly con­vivial and enjoy­able evening.
Sun­day start­ed with a pre­sen­ta­tion “Teach­ing Sto­ries from the Ori­en­tal Sufi Tra­di­tion” by Dorothee Greve and Ifor Rhys. This was about the nature of sto­ries that teach in the Sufi tra­di­tion and how that dif­fers from oth­er tra­di­tions.
There fol­lowed the sec­ond round table ses­sion (see below) and then the clos­ing cir­cle for sum­maries, feed­back thanks to the organ­is­ers and, in par­tic­u­lar, an ova­tion for Micaela fol­lowed by a clos­ing group song.
I look for­ward in great antic­i­pa­tion to the next meet­ing in two years’ time, always assum­ing that, at my great age, I live that long
Mar­tin Man­asse Octo­ber 2018



On Sat­ur­day, 6th Octo­ber, there will be two work­shop peri­ods 11:30–13:30 and 18:00–19:30. Par­tic­i­pants can choose between the fol­low­ing four workshops.


The Chance of Postraumatic Growth

The impact of trau­mat­ic expe­ri­ences to the human con­sti­tu­tion and health:
Sto­ry­telling in emer­gency ped­a­gogy for chil­dren and youth with focus on deal­ing with trau­ma.
In recent years the mat­ter of trau­ma caused by war and migra­tion has engaged many ther­a­pists, psy­chol­o­gists, art ther­a­pists and ped­a­gogues, and moved them to take action for peo­ple who need help in turn­ing post trau­mat­ic stress into post trau­mat­ic growth. Sto­ry­telling encom­pass­es a vari­ety of pos­si­bil­i­ties and can also enable us to inten­sive­ly work and share expe­ri­ences with peo­ple in need. Through an aes­thet­ic-artis­tic approach, sto­ry­telling holds an inte­gra­tive poten­tial and, thanks to the heal­ing and inter­cul­tur­al nature of sto­ries, it can open hearts and facil­i­tate a gen­uine dia­logue.
Doc­tor Straube and Micaela Sauber are both also engaged in man­i­fold activ­i­ties with world­wide projects of Friends of Wal­dorf edu­ca­tion sec­tion and emer­gency pegagogy.

Held by Micaela Sauber and Mar­tin Straube.
Micaela Sauber was born 1945 in the last days of the sec­ond world war. Micaela has been a pro­fes­sion­al sto­ry­teller since the 1990s, after the­o­log­i­cal stud­ies, cura­tive edu­ca­tion and jour­nal­ism. She ini­ti­at­ed the net­work Tellers with­out Bor­ders (inter­na­tion­al) andErzäh­ler ohne Gren­zen (Ger­man speak­ing area), keeps threads togeth­er and is also the head of the board of the Ger­man legal asso­ci­a­tion Erzäh­ler ohne Gren­zen e.V.. Some of her key expe­ri­ences as a sto­ry­teller and teacher for sto­ry­telling were in Bosnia dur­ing and after war, Dubrovnik/Croatia after siege, Palestine/Gaza strip and West­bank, North Iraq, Libanon. Dur­ing the last three years with doc­tors of med­i­cine and ther­a­pists in Ger­many she stud­ied about trau­ma, its ori­gin and heal­ing and con­nects this to her sto­ry­telling skills. As a sto­ry­teller Micaela is trav­el­ling with emer­gency ped­a­gogy to coun­tries in cri­sis, giv­ing work­shops about sto­ry­telling. Friends of Wal­dorf edu­ca­tion who have devel­oped
effec­tive mis­sions in emer­gency and trau­ma ped­a­gogy world­wide since 2006, are her main coop­er­a­tion part­ners. She runs a course with Brit­ta Wilmsmeier for those sto­ry­tellers wish­ing to work with refugees called ‘Sto­ry­telling Here and Now’.

Mar­tin Straube is a med­ical anthro­po­soph­ic doctor(GAÄD), lec­tur­er and con­sul­tant for med­i­c­i­nal, ped­a­gog­i­cal and art top­ics. He offers train­ing for phar­ma­cists, doc­tors, home­o­path­ic prac­ti­tion­ers, mid­wives and works for com­pa­nies, schools, kinder­gartens and train­ing insti­tu­tions.
Recent­ly he found­ed the Inter­na­tion­al Insti­tute for Emer­gency and Trau­ma GmbH.
Pre­vi­ous expe­ri­ence: School doc­tor for Wal­dorf schools, Ruhr region; lec­tur­er at the Ita Weg­man voca­tion­al col­lege, Wup­per­tal; lec­tur­er at the Insti­tute for Home­opa­thy, Wit­ten. Cur­rent­ly I have a prac­tice in Ham­burg and have giv­en around 200 lec­tures on med­ical, ped­a­gog­i­cal and art top­ics. In recent years my wife and I (she more fre­quent­ly than me) have trav­elled to con­flict and cri­sis areas around the world to work with trau­ma­tised children.


Storytelling and Personal Objects

We will explore sto­ry­telling from the rela­tion to per­son­al objects. We often think of per­son­al objects as some­thing we need, or some­thing we acquire for aes­thet­ics, neces­si­ty or fun. But the per­son­al objects are com­pan­ions to our emo­tions, they serve to express dynam­ic process­es with­in us, among and between us and our sur­round­ings. The objects are part of our biog­ra­phy.
Per­son­al objects may be lost, but even lost objects have strength and pow­er, and as they are remem­bered, they car­ry sto­ries with them, these sto­ries can still be told and lis­tened to. Per­son­al objects, whether they are lost or still belong­ing to the own­er, con­tain mem­o­ries and lega­cy. They are con­nect­ed to deep feel­ings. These sto­ries can go all the way into the core of man. This work has been used as part of lan­guage train­ing in work with refugees.

by Ivanir Sibyl­la Has­son, who is a pro­fes­sion­al per­form­ing artist for 30 years. The last 7 years she has been work­ing with asy­lum seek­ers in recep­tion cen­ters all over Nor­way with both sto­ry­telling, clown­ing and cir­cus schools. Since 2005 she has been deep­en­ing her work in the field of Sto­ry­telling as a Heal­ing Art. She has been hold­ing work­shops with Heal­ing Sto­ry­telling in Nor­way, Ice­land, Den­mark, Esto­nia and Fin­land. She is the leader of the Heal­ing sto­ry alliance, Nordic ALBA Nor­way since 2010 arrang­ing two inter­na­tion­al Sym­po­siums: ‘Sto­ry­telling as a Heal­ing Art: The Way Of The Heart 2012’, and ‘Sto­ries in The Wild 2016’. She is also a mem­ber of the Euro­pean Sto­ry­telling Peace Coun­cil and Tellers with­out Bor­ders (Inter­na­tion­al).
As an edu­ca­tor she works intu­itive­ly and is very keen to cap­ture the ener­gy that aris­es here and now. Her has a long expe­ri­ence as a teacher in Norway’s small­est cir­cus, Cirkus Sibyl­la. She uses means as play, dance and singing as a part of the work.


Stories of the Stranger and Self :
The Place of Witnessing in Storytelling

In this work­shop we will look at the place and mean­ing of wit­ness­ing in sto­ry­telling. What is the rela­tion­ship between the self and sto­ry? In a world where there is so much con­flict and dis­lo­ca­tion, where does wit­ness­ing in a sto­ry hap­pen? How can the sto­ry­teller be a wit­ness and teller at the same time? This is a work­shop for explo­ration and reflec­tion. Every­one is wel­come, with or with­out the expe­ri­ence of storytelling.

by Gau­ri Raje, who is an anthro­pol­o­gist and sto­ry­teller and works in the UK and India with adults and vul­ner­a­ble groups espe­cial­ly asy­lum-seek­ers, refugees and migrant groups. She per­forms
reg­u­lar­ly in the U.K, India and Europe. Her per­for­mance projects include direct­ing ‘East of the Sun, West of the Moon’ a col­lec­tion of sto­ries for adults from around the world trans­lat­ed and told in 3 dif­fer­ent Indi­an lan­guages, ‘Bad­lands’, a sto­ry­telling of folk sto­ries of the land and rivers of cen­tral India and ‘Tales of Exile and Sanc­tu­ary’, sto­ries from around the world explor­ing themes of exile. She ran an Arts Coun­cil fund­ed bio­graph­i­cal sto­ry­telling evening series in Birm­ing­ham (UK) for migrants called ‘Long Jour­ney Home: True Life Migrant Tales’ in 2016. She is cur­rent­ly work­ing with bio­graph­i­cal and tra­di­tion­al sto­ries of South Asian migrants to the West of Scot­land with AwazFM, a South Asian radio sta­tion in Glas­gow. She is a mem­ber of the Tellers with­out Bor­ders (inter­na­tion­al)
LinkedIn: Gau­ri Raje, Face­book: Silent Sounds (@gaurirajestorytelling)



Con­nect­ing tra­di­tion­al tales and our own sto­ries, we will work with strength­en­ing the sto­ry­teller. We are liv­ing chal­leng­ing times when more and more peo­ple “burn out” and use up their resources. What hap­pens when we give too much? Which are the sto­ries that can help us go from unsus­tain­able or bare­ly sus­tain­able to regen­er­at­ing? How can activists remain tru­ly con­nect­ed to their hearts and inner forces? This is a work­shop work­ing with inten­tions and set­ting bound­aries, a work­shop about bal­anc­ing giv­ing and receiv­ing.
The work­shop is suit­ed both for begin­ners and expe­ri­enced sto­ry­tellers. We will explore, impro­vise and share expe­ri­ences.
The work­shop will be held in Eng­lish (and Span­ish if required) by Maria Ser­ra­no, who is a mul­ti­lin­gual pro­fes­sion­al sto­ry­teller from Fin­land and Spain. She is chair­per­son of ALBA­SuomiFin­land (in the Nordic Alliance for Heal­ing Sto­ry­telling) and an active
mem­ber of Tellers With­out Border’s (inter­na­tion­al) core group. She per­forms in Swedish, Span­ish and Eng­lish. Her reper­toire includes traditional‑, true-life- and impro­vised sto­ries, the lat­ter at which she’s par­tic­u­lar­ly com­fort­able and adept. As a sto­ry­teller she has main­ly trained in South Africa with the Inter­na­tion­al School of Sto­ry­telling. She per­forms in a vari­ety of set­tings ‑from schools and libraries to stages and streets, in sev­er­al coun­tries. Because of her back­ground she has a pas­sion for cre­at­ing spaces where dif­fer­ent cul­tures can meet. María was born in 1967 to a Span­ish pho­tog­ra­ph­er and a Swedish-speak­ing actress from Fin­land. Reared in Spain and Fin­land, she also trav­elled all over Europe (East and West) and North Africa as a child. She grew up among the com­mu­ni­ty of Chilean refugees and is cur­rent­ly work­ing with new­ly arrived refugees in her com­mu­ni­ty in Fin­land. María has also worked exten­sive­ly as a con­fer­ence inter­preter and trained as a class teacher. She is mar­ried and a moth­er of four.


Round Table Talks

Over the course of the con­fer­ence two round table talks will be host­ed. Each time a group of experts will open a con­ver­sa­tion around a spe­cif­ic top­ic. After­wards the audi­ence is very wel­come to take part in these con­ver­sa­tions.
Sat­ur­day, 6th Octo­ber 16–17.30

Ethics in Crit­i­cal Time : Sto­ries need­ed for encour­age­ment and hope
This is a unique oppor­tu­ni­ty for sto­ry­tellers from around Europe to lis­ten to the sto­ries of peo­ple from Sara­je­vo, who through their knowl­edge and love made and con­tin­ue to make changes in times of cri­sis, hor­ror and evil. The con­ver­sa­tion will be host­ed by Micaela Sauberand joined by
the fol­low­ing experts:

Alma Kar­ic will open the con­fer­ence with her chil­dren choir “Sun­cocre­ti”. She was born in Tuzla in 1978, where she start­ed her music edu­ca­tion. Lat­er she grad­u­at­ed from Depart­ment of Orches­tra and Choir Con­duct­ing at Sara­je­vo Music Acad­e­my, in 2001. She is an active music teacher and con­duc­tor in Pri­ma­ry Music and bal­let school “Novo Sara­je­vo” since 2000, where she estab­lished var­i­ous forms of chil­dren choirs and orches­tras ( gui­tar ensem­ble, accor­dion orchestra,a non- stan­dard orches­tra and a cham­ber orches­tra) with whom she entered many region­al com­pe­ti­tions and some inter­na­tion­al ones , too. With these ensem­bles she entered sev­en com­pe­ti­tions and won 16 awards in total, with nine of them being first prizes, one spe­cial prize ( 100 points) and even one Grand Prix of the cat­e­go­ry of chil­dren choirs ( Inter­na­tion­al Choir Championship”Lege Artis”). She is Artis­tic Direc­tor of Super­ar in BiH, an asso­ci­a­tion that works on pro­vid­ing train­ing in music and dance, and offers access to the pos­i­tive effects of the per­form­ing arts to ALL CHILDREN free of charge.

Dr. Gorcin Diz­dar is Head of Fon­daci­ja Mak Diz­dar for Bosn­ian cul­ture. He was born in Sara­je­vo in 1984. He attend­ed pri­ma­ry schools in Bosnia and Herze­gov­ina, Croa­t­ia and Ger­many, and com­plet­ed his sec­ondary school edu­ca­tion in the UK. In 2003, he was award­ed the Oxford Stu­dent Schol­ar­ship, which enabled him to study Phi­los­o­phy and Ger­man at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Oxford, where he achieved the high­est results of his year at the final exam­i­na­tion. After ini­tial­ly return­ing to Sara­je­vo in 2007, in 2009 he start­ed first an MA, and lat­er a PhD in Human­i­ties at York Uni­ver­si­ty in Toron­to, Cana­da, where he was award­ed the Cana­da Vanier Grad­u­ate Schol­ar­ship, one of the most pres­ti­gious post­grad­u­ate schol­ar­ships award­ed by the Cana­di­an Gov­ern­ment. After com­plet­ing his PhD in 2016, he returned to Sara­je­vo, work­ing as the direc­tor of the Mak Diz­dar Foun­da­tion and teach­ing at the Inter­na­tion­al Uni­ver­si­ty of Sara­je­vo. His essays were pub­lished in Bosn­ian, Cana­di­an and Ger­man jour­nals, while his lyri­cal essay The Stones of the Ances­tors was includ­ed in the selec­tion Best Cana­di­an Essays 2013.

Alen Kris­tic is an author and the­olo­gian. He was born in 1977 in Sara­je­vo, a Mas­ters degree in The­ol­o­gy, founder and edi­tor of the inter­na­tion­al the­o­log­i­cal peri­od­i­cal Con­cil­i­um for Croa­t­ia and and Bosnia and Herce­gow­ina. He also edits Sta­tus, a mag­a­zine based in Mostar focus­ing on polit­i­cal cul­ture and social issues, as well as the peri­od­i­cal Bobavac, based in Vareš.
Amongst the main con­cerns of his aca­d­e­m­ic work are reli­gions’ poten­tial for peace, the for­ma­tion of the reli­gious from the remains of social­ism, the role of women in the reli­gious sphere and lib­er­a­tion the­ol­o­gy. Alen Kris­tić has pub­lished many aca­d­e­m­ic books and trans­lat­ed from Ger­man and Eng­lish to Bosn­ian lan­guage. Amongst these trans­la­tions are Ethics (Diet­rich Bon­ho­ef­fer) and Gno­sis und Chris­ten­tum (Christoph Markschies).

Jovan Div­jak was a mem­ber of the elite troops that estab­lished Yugoslavia, serv­ing under its first pres­i­dent, Josip Broz Tito. He served in the Yugoslav Nation­al Army of Bosnia-Herze­gov­ina and played an impor­tant part in the defense of B‑H dur­ing the aggres­sion aimed against it. He has received many domes­tic and inter­na­tion­al awards for his humane and human­i­tar­i­an work dur­ing and after the war, as well as the high­est French medal of the Legion of Hon­or. In 1994, along with 57 cit­i­zens (intel­lec­tu­als, artists, the­atre and lit­er­ary work­ers, sol­diers, police offi­cers and oth­ers), Jovan Div­jak par­tic­i­pat­ed in estab­lish­ing the Foundation/ Asso­ci­a­tion “Build­ing B‑H Through Edu­ca­tion” (Obra­zo­van­je gra­di BiH) and served as its Exec­u­tive Direc­tor. In twen­ty-four years, the Asso­ci­a­tion has giv­en out about 6,500 grants to pupils and stu­dents – vic­tims of war, dis­abled and tal­ent­ed chil­dren, those of the Roma nation­al minor­i­ty, and the social­ly dis­ad­van­taged. He is the author of numer­ous reviews and fore­words to spe­cial­ist and fic­tion lit­er­a­ture, eg. “Ratovi u Hrvatskoj i Bosni i Herce­govi­ni 1991.–1995.” (The Wars in Croa­t­ia and Bosnia-Herze­gov­ina 1991–1995, 2000); sep­a­rate­ly: “Agre­si­ja na BiH” (Aggres­sion on B‑H, 2004); “Sara­je­vo, mon amour” (2004 in French,
and 2007 in Ital­ian); “Očeku­jući istinu i prav­du – Beč­ki dnevnik” (Expect­ing Truth and Jus­tice – The Vien­na diary, 2012). He also starred in sev­er­al films: Sara­je­vo my love (doc­u­men­tary, 2013), Venu­to
al mon­do (fea­ture film, 2012), Bosnia (doc­u­men­tary, 2005), and Bosnia (doc­u­men­tary, 1995). He par­tic­i­pat­ed in var­i­ous activ­i­ties in the non-gov­ern­men­tal sec­tor, both in B‑H and abroad, as well as many inter­na­tion­al con­fer­ences held in B‑H.
Dze­vad Sabanag­ic is a Vio­lin­ist who gave many free string quar­tet con­certs dur­ing the war for the peo­ple of Sarajevo.

Sun­day 7th Octo­ber 11.30–13.00
about Sto­ries, Sto­ry­telling and the Dig­i­tal World in the Life of Chil­dren
Emerg­ing tasks and ques­tions for a healthy growth of chil­dren. What is the role of sto­ry­telling in this process?
Impact of dig­i­tal divices and tele­vi­sion in ear­ly child­hood will be in the focus of experts in med­i­cin, ped­a­gogy, ethics and sto­ry­telling. Sci­en­tists are warn­ing that the use of dig­i­tal devices in ear­ly child­hood has a destruc­tive impact on brain devel­op­ment. It caus­es adic­tion, fear and dump­ness of cog­ni­tion abil­i­ties and even autism or autis­tic ten­den­cies. To become a mas­ter of the dig­i­tal devices is a task for old­er school­child­ren who have devel­oped well and healthy in their ear­ly child­hood.
This talk will give lat­est neu­ro sci­en­tif­ic research­es’ infor­ma­tion as well as ped­a­gog­i­cal and med­ical obser­va­tions and expe­ri­ences. Sto­ry­telling for and with chil­dren attracts and strenght­ens atten­tion,
sup­ports inde­pen­dant fan­ta­sy as well as explo­ration of life and world. The con­ver­sa­tion will be host­ed by Micaela Sauber and joined by the fol­low­ing experts:
Alen Kris­tic is an author and the­ol­o­gist (his pro­file see above).

Mar­tin Straube is a med­ical anthro­po­soph­ic doc­tor (GAÄD), lec­tur­er and con­sul­tant for med­i­c­i­nal, ped­a­gog­i­cal and art top­ics. He offers train­ing for phar­ma­cists, doc­tors, home­o­path­ic prac­ti­tion­ers, mid­wives and works for com­pa­nies, schools, kinder­gartens and train­ing insti­tu­tions. Recent­ly he found­ed the Inter­na­tion­al Insti­tute for Emer­gency and Trau­ma GmbH.
Pre­vi­ous expe­ri­ence: School doc­tor for Wal­dorf schools, Ruhr region; lec­tur­er at the Ita Weg­man voca­tion­al col­lege, Wup­per­tal; lec­tur­er at the Insti­tute for Home­opa­thy, Wit­ten. Cur­rent­ly I have a prac­tice in Ham­burg and have giv­en around 200 lec­tures on med­ical, ped­a­gog­i­cal and art top­ics. In recent years my wife and I (she more fre­quent­ly than me) have trav­elled to con­flict and cri­sis areas around the world to work with trau­ma­tised children.

Min­ka Görzel-Straube is a trau­ma ped­a­gogue and teacher. She has been a Rudolf- Stein­er-ped­a­gogue for over 20 years. Today she is trained as a trau­ma ped­a­gogue and alter­na­tive psy­chother­a­pist, ans has worked mul­ti­ple times with Friends of Wal­dorf Edu­ca­tion (in Gaza, Kyr­gys­tan, Japan, Libanon, Philip­pines, Irak, Bosnia and Greece). Trau­ma ped­a­gogy is her cen­tral con­cern. She led diverse assaign­ments in Irak, became the ped­a­gog­i­cal direc­tor there and is in charge of the coop­er­a­tion with the Uni­ver­si­ty of Dohuk. Fur­ther she is found­ing mem­ber if
the Inter­na­tion­al Insti­tute for Emer­gency and Trau­ma Pedagogy.

Elma Sel­manag­ić Lizde was born in 1975 and lives in Sara­je­vo. A cer­tain peri­od of life and part of edu­ca­tion she has spent in Slove­nia and Cana­da. She received her PhD in Ped­a­gog­i­cal Sci­ences at the Fac­ul­ty of Phi­los­o­phy of the Uni­ver­si­ty of Sara­je­vo at the Depart­ment of Ped­a­gogy, in the seg­ment of research­ing of process­es that take place with­in the fam­i­ly as a sys­tem, and par­tic­u­lary of
its indi­vid­ual mem­bers; espe­cial­ly broth­ers and sis­ters. The focus on life­long learn­ing and the desire to improve both pro­fes­sion­al and fam­i­ly life has led her to attain­ing the role of a fam­i­ly psy­chother­a­pist. She is con­tin­u­osly in the process of learn­ing and under­tak­ing psy­chother­a­py super­vi­sion of her work. Elma is also mem­ber of the Asso­ci­a­tion for Sis­temic Prac­tice and Ther­a­py BiH as well as a mem­ber of the Euro­pean Asso­ci­a­tion for Fam­i­ly Ther­a­py (EFTA). She is the author of sev­er­al pro­fes­sion­al and sci­en­tif­ic arti­cles in the field od fam­i­ly ped­a­gogy. She also pub­lished the book about rela­tion­ship between sib­lings named „Odnos brace i ses­tara kroz intrao­biteljsku dinamiku“. She is a daugh­ter, sis­ter, aunt, daugh­ter in law, cousin, friend, neigh­bor, wife and moth­er of a daugh­ter and a son. The roles list­ed are a part of Elma’s unbreak­able iden­ti­ty, strong­ly per­vad­ed with fam­i­ly rela­tion­ships and the val­ues of the parental role in the life of every indi­vid­ual opt­ing for that step. She is employed at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Sara­je­vo – Fac­ul­ty of Edu­ca­tion­al Sciences.