Maša Avramović

Current living place:
Belgrade, Serbia

Maša Avramović

Teaching Assistant and PhD candidate at the Department of Pedagogy, Faculty of Phylosophy, University of Belgrade and President of NGO C31 – Center for Developing Children’s Rights Culture.

  • Former activities:

    Consultant in child participation, research with children, educational program development (Save the Children, UNICEF, different cultural institutions…), 2008-
    Education Program Coordinator, Embassy of Sweden in Belgrade (2010–2011)
    Child Protection Program Officer and Program Development Officer in Save the Children UK SEE (2007–2008)
    Coordinator of Child Rights Program, Children’s Cultural Centre, Belgrade (2003–2007)

  • My organization:
    C31 is founded by the multidisciplinary team of young professionals with aims to:
    • Enhance implementation of child rights with special focus on child participation, right to quality education and culture
    • Encourage children to think critically about society, reflect on issues of intolerance and responsibility with use of history as starting point and foster values of human rights and tolerance
    • Encourage children to express themselves through different media

  • Examples of concrete activities I have organized/am organizing in the field of “dealing with the past”:
    • Long term initiative “Museum of the Past for the Future” in cooperation with the Memorial Centre “Kragujevacki oktobar” and Regional Office of the Ministry of Education – aimed to develop a platform for education in human right and tolerance by use of history of WWII and recent past
    • Time Travel to Belgrade in WWII – Educational program based on use of history of Jewish people in Serbia during WWII and “time travel method” as a starting point for discussion about contemporary issues of discrimination, tolerance and solidarity (2012 -, in cooperation with Fund B92)

  • Concrete challenges I am facing in my “dealing with the past”-related work:

    Educational system in Serbia does not create enough space for dialogue on human rights values and current social issues, neither for critical reflection on history, individual and collective identity and reconciliation. On the other side, schools are not immune on intolerance, violence and influences of right wind ideologies. On a wider scale this situation in education is reflection and consequence of the luck of political will and social consensus on facing difficult past which is inevitable for core transformation of the society and building democracy.

  • My personal link to/interest for the topic of “dealing with difficult pasts”:
    I belong to a generation that was brought up in a spirit of antifascism, humanity and equality. But at the same time to a generation whose childhood was placed in time of wars in the former Yugoslavia, when all these values were questioned by ever-growing nationalism. Now my generation is living and taking a part in a development of a society that is built on consequences of the past.
    We are feeling these consequences whenever we face with destructiveness and dangerous of past ideologies, each time when we are asked about Serbian crimes or when we see how still some groups
    Influenced by these ideologies try to stop development of democratic society.
    I couldn’t influence the past, but I can take a role now. And I chose to put my efforts to building of society based on respect for human rights, tolerance and diversity. For that I can take responsibility.