Yunus Emre Institute has organized an online version of its Children's Festival this year due to the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) outbreak although it has been holding it physically for eight years in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
As the final event of the "My Choice Is Turkish" Project, implemented by the Institute in Bosnia and Herzegovina since 2011, the festival was live broadcast from the social media accounts of the Institute, giving many children merriment online.
In his keynote speech, Yunus Emre Institute President Prof. Dr. Şeref Ateş reminded that the festival would be held in a sports hall in Zenica with the participation of thousands of children in previous years and stated that he hoped to organize the festival in a physical setting as soon as possible.
Ambassador of the Republic of Turkey to Sarajevo Haldun Koç indicated that he was glad to see that the festival was organized without interruption. "These events will resume after the epidemic ends. Today's program, in a sense, confirms this," he said.
Minister of Education, Science, Culture and Sports of Zenica-Doboj Canton Spahija Kozlić noted that the festival has been organized online this year due to health considerations, and stated that thousands of children will hopefully come together as usual next year in Zenica.
Istanbul Provincial Director of National Education Levent Yazıcı pointed out that 210 school from Istanbul and Bosnia and Herzegovina have become sister schools. "I think this fraternity will continue for many years to come. I hope that this fraternity between Istanbul and Bosnia and Herzegovina continues after we overcome the epidemic," he said.
Kids singing songs in Turkish and Bosnian
During the program presented by İsabella Damla Güvenilir, the leading actress of "Elif," a Turkish TV soap popular in Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Bosnian children have sung songs in Turkish and Bosnian with their peers in the sister schools in Istanbul.
Bosnia's accomplished athlete Amel Tuka as well as singers Mirza Selimovic and Dzenan Loncarevic, who took stage the previous festivals, attended the event and Latif Mocevic, a famous singer known for his children's songs in Bosnia and Herzegovina, gave a concert at the end of the program.