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SOME RECENT INFORMATION FROM USTIKOLINA'S PROJECT
Updated on October 1998

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Summary
September was a month of surviving and planning for the future. English and computer lessons did not operate as the International Co-ordinator took a break to work as an election supervisor. The centre remained open during this time, showing that the local staff is competent in running the daily operations of the centre. After surviving the turmoil of the elections (for which the centre provided a team of observers), the rest of the month was spent preparing for increased activities in October. Our co-operation with SCIO from Ustikolina continued without problems throughout the whole month.

Details
The first part of September was dominated by the elections. The international supervisor left from the 4th to the 15th to work as an election supervisor, which meant that English and computer lessons did not operate. Other activities such as the ceramics and photography courses run by SCIO continued normally. In addition, in co-operation with the OSCE, the centre organised a team of local election observers. In general, tension among the youth was quite high as a result of the elections and stress arising from the graffiti incident in late August. Many youth were not impressed that we had involved the police and this associated the centre with the image of an “occupying force”, an image enforced by some of the parties campaign platforms. The decision of the Election Appeals Sub-Commission to fine both the SRS and the SDS 250DM, while seeming to put the matter to rest, also politicised the issue further. However, it seams that involving the police was necessary in order to make it clear that such actions against the centre will not be tolerated. Teenage attendance remained low throughout September, although, with the starting of the school year, many younger children are starting to visit the centre during the day. Excursions also continued during September, with 3 trips to the Ostrog Monastery in Monte-Negro, Budva on the Montenegrin coast and Banja-Luka. Excursions continue to form a strong part of our program as they give the youth a broader view of their world and relieve the isolation felt here. September was a time of looking for additional staff; starting in October the centre will add a local instructor for computers, a local English teacher, a local journalism instructor and a new intern for the position of international co-ordinator to it’s staff. This transfer of responsibility is vital to the future of the centre. Teaching of both English and computers have been done in the past by the international co-ordinator; with a little help, the new local staff should be able to take over these activities, leaving the co-ordinators free to develop new ideas. The intern international co-ordinator shall work as a trainee until the end month of October, when she shall take over the position.

And That's all at the moment. Good luck and thaks to all of you.
THE SCIO'S STAFF

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