By Lamija Jamak, YES 2013-2014, Bosnia and Herzegovina, hosted by PAX in Marysville, WA
On May 28, Merima Muhic (YES 2015-2016, Bosnia and Herzegovina, hosted by ACES in Apex, NC) visited the independently funded dog shelter Gladno Polje along with Sarajevo-based YES Abroad students Jocelyn Krieger, Haley Zehrung, and Helena Clark. While there, the group helped to clean up the shelter and simply cuddle with these precious pups. The shelter regularly houses more than 100 dogs and frequently receives new ones, as it is one of the closest shelters to Sarajevo.
In March, Merima had organized an activity in which she, Haley, Jocelyn, Merima Krivokapa (YES 2015-2016, Bosnia and Herzegovina, hosted by PAX in Cottonwood, AZ), and Ana Dutina (YES 2015-2016, Bosnia and Herzegovina, hosted by PAX in Lake Worth, FL) engaged passersby in the center of Sarajevo in conversations about animal rights and raised money for the Gladno Polje shelter. Those who stopped to talk with the group were offered cookies and warm drinks, and in exchange donated approximately 60 USD, which was used to purchase dog food.
“We decided it was time that we also provided something that can’t be bought with money,” Mermia explained, referring to the group’s decision to continue their support of the shelter through a visit. “This time it was cuddles and time well spent with dogs placed in the shelter.”
Merima, a vegetarian who is very passionate about promoting animal rights, learned to love dogs while living in the U.S., where her host family had a dog and her host sister had four! Her host family also adopted two cats while Merima lived with them, highlighting for Merima the importance of supporting shelters.