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Archive file

VIP No.5, October 26th, 1993

Volunteers Information Pakrac

  International volunteers working camp
  Pedagoska Skola
  4355 Pakrac, Croatia
Fax & Phone:
  00385 46 84 007 (Mark "Volunteers camp")

a) Situation Report

Although there was a railway bridge blown up near Lipik (About 5
kilometers from Pakrac) on Saturday night, it is still calm. Only
UNPROFOR had some problems with the Croatian police because they
wanted to move a checkpoint closer to Pakrac. But this is only the
usual powergame between UN and the local police and did not affect our
work. So we still don't miss the "Wild West" feeling here.

The best news are that four volunteers from Poland will start
working on the Serbian side of Pakrac ! Two of them for a three week
period, the other two for three months. The peace center in Belgrade
will send a leader for this camp and takes responsibility for more
volunteers. Although there will be no official relation between the
two camps in the beginning, this is a big step forward to our main
goal: Working together with both sides.

Two Journalists visited us in the last days. One from Holland who made
an interview with some volunteers for the Dutch radio. And another one
from New York who will write a report about our work in his journal.

b) Volunteers Activities

1. Reconstruction & Support

- Working Groups

After the working groups finished in Lipik they started now to work
inside houses because the winter is coming fast. And we are very happy
about the warm jackets of our working equipment.

- Children's Playground

This week we finished the seesaws and we can put them in place this

- Preparation Of Our New House

Gas, water and beds will be arranged this week. The contract is
settled without conditions. Even the 'no drugs' condition was left
out. (Yeah !)

2. Social Activities

- Football Tournament
Six teams took part in the football tournament last Saturday. Four of
them were "professional" teams: The school team, the Pakrac club, the
Argentinian UNPROFOR team and the UNCIVPOL team. The other two were
mixed teams and played just for fun.
The two local teams made it to the final round. With a lot of support
the school team won the tournament. The about fifty spectators were
very fanatic and the players were very fair.

- Juggling Course
There are now seven children taking part in the juggling course with
Burkie and Gauthier.

- Games With Children
Last time the children made music with all the things you can use to
produce any sound like bottles of water, forks and other kitchen
tools, beer caps, etc. They learned very fast to make rhythmical

- Jazz Dance
Ralph (A volunteer from Pakrac) has already 13 people in his Jazz
Dance course which is every Tuesday and Wedensday.

3. Volunteers Radio

Last time we had a discussion with a girl from Pakrac and with other
people via telephone about the need and the possibility of a youth
in Pakrac.

4. Ideas, Plans & Projects

- Youth Center
There is a good chance that we can use an old factory for free near
our new
house as a room for a youth center.

- Exchange Of Children Drawings
The plan to exchange children's drawings with schools abroad will this
week be seriously undertaken.

- Better Working Conditions
We want to improve the conditions in the working groups. Not only the
tools are quite old and scarce, also is material needed for health
like masks, protection glasses, gloves and shoes. We want to push this

d) List of Needs

- Guitars or other instruments for a music group
- Handcraft
- All kind of handwork material to occupy children in a creative way
  (Cotton for friendship bracelettes, plasteline, claim)
- Big mirrors for Jazz Dance course
- Subscribtion of a weekly newspaper
- Masks, protection glasses, working gloves
- Steel toe capped boots in 35 to 42
- Mini bus

Money donations are still welcome!

"Nobody made a greater mistake than he who did nothing because he
                      could only do a little"

                The Pakrac volunteers, 26.10.1993

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