Since the Centre for Drama Education of Bosnia and Herzegovina was founded, there have been several projects which of regional cultural co-operation. One of the biggest projects was "The PAX Project", which was implemented in partnership with CARE International. It was set up as a key component of CARE's civil society programme in July 1997, and has continued until March 2000 as a peace-building and social reconstruction project focussing upon young people out of school and children in schools with their teachers.
There have been two principal strands to the PAX Project's work:
1. promotion of multi-ethnic peace-building work with youth theatre groups;
2. development of a participatory learning approach for classroom peace-building work.
The PAX Project’s goal has been "to foster a sustainable local environment of peace and multi-ethnic tolerance across all three main communities that comprise Bosnia and Herzegovina".
This work has been conducted on a national basis. In addition, the Project has been continually linking work done within Bosnia and Herzegovina with inter-Regional work (especially with Serbia and Croatia) with the same focus on peace building and reconstruction. The pre-war network of theatre artists of former Yugoslavia has been to a small, but significant degree, maintained and reconstructed on the axis Zagreb-Mostar-Belgrade. There is now a firmly established tri-partite co-operation between CDOBiH and its two sister organisations in Croatia, HCDO (Croatian Centre for Drama Education) and in Serbia, CEDEUM.
The "productive distraction" of the work has aided the quality and pace of peace-building in all its different aspects: trauma healing, breaking down barriers between those previously on opposed sides, conflict resolution, the development of mutual respect and understanding, reconciliation and social reconstruction.
In the last 10 years, the Centre for Drama Education of Bosnia and Herzegovina, in co-operation with the Mostar Youth Theatre and the Network of Independent Theatres, has been organising and leading various numbers of workshops in all Bosnia and Herzegovina, but also in the region of South-East Europe. Attendance at the national and international workshops and conferences has been sought, almost invariably successfully, from all the 'groups' or 'communities' of B&H. This was achieved by setting up local "separate" workshops in the first place, then by inviting participants to the next national workshop. On other occasions the fact of a workshop, conference, or festival being international has 'given cover' to people from the different 'groups' to attend. The presence of guests from Croatia and Serbia (as well as other Balkan states) has been particularly important in this respect. The focus of these activities has been cultural or educational. This has prevented a situation where people feel manipulated into 'peaceful coexistence' or 'reconciliation' on someone else's terms or agenda.
Since 1999, each February, the Centre for Drama Education of Bosnia and Herzegovina is organising the International Conference. Until now, we realised the International Conferences under the following titles: “The causes of violence amongst young people and the role that theatre and drama can play in dealing with them”; “The role of theatre and drama in protecting children’s rights”; “Theatre and boundaries”; “The healing power of theatre”; “Where are we now?”; “Multicultural dialogue: chance or problem?”.
Since 1998, the Centre for Drama Education of Bosnia and Herzegovina has established an international award called the “Grozdanin Kikot” - award for five individuals/organisations who have made significant contributions to the development of drama education. Some of the laureates of this Award are: Eugenio Barba, Denmark; Augusto Boal, Brazil; Josef Krofta, Czech Republic; Linna Atel, Jordan; Nicos Govas, Greece; George Soros, USA; Guy Williams, UK; Vladimir Milcin, FYR of Macedonia; Gradimir Gojer, Bosnia and Herzegovina; Vladimir Krusic, Croatia; Ljubica Beljanski Ristic, Serbia and Montenegro; Stig Erricson, Norway…
Since 1999 the Centre for Drama Education of Bosnia and Herzegovina prepares and publishes the only magazine for drama, theatre and education in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Throughout these years, this magazine became a regular Magazine for theatre, drama and education workers in this area, especially in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia and Serbia. Apart from the editing board from Bosnia and Herzegovina, our co-operators are also Vlado Krušić (Croatia, HCDO), Jelena Sitar (Slovenia, director), Ljubica Beljanski-Ristić (Serbia, CEDEUM), Milan Mađarev (Serbia, theatrologist) and many others.
The Centre for Drama Education of Bosnia and Herzegovina, in co-operation with the Mostar Youth Theatre and the Network of Independent Theatres, is organiser of the International Festival of Authorial Poetry in which, until now, have participated individuals and groups from all continents. This Festival is a place of meeting of important world theatres, artists and young people who are beginning their work in the world of theatre. On the “Alternative Academy”, which is a part of the Festival, some of the most important one-week workshop leaders have so far been: Katcura Kan, Japan; Marcos Martinez, USA; Julian Boal, France; Zigmunt Molik, Poland; Ana Wolf, Argentina; Marco Lully, Italia; Julia Varley, Denmark; Roberta Carerri, Denmark; Charles Renault, Netherlands; Victor Goultchenko, Russia; Jelena Sitar, Slovenia; Zeljko Vukmirica, Croatia; Ferid Karajica, Serbia and Montenegro…
Since 2003, each year in April we are organising the BH Festival of secondary schools’ theatre groups. The duration of each festival is one week and all festival participants are present all the time in the festival. Usually on each Festival are 8 groups with approx. 100 young people – participants. Also, during each organization of this festival, 15 leaders of these youth theatre groups and 5 theatre artists are participating in discussions about performances, as well as leading workshops for participants and group leaders.
Since 2001, each May the Centre for Drama Education of Bosnia and Herzegovina is organising the Festival of Children’s Theatre groups. This Festival is taking place in Gračanica and it is 3 days long. The children of 10 theatre groups from all Bosnia and Herzegovina are present during all festival time. The group leaders and the school teachers are holding several workshops, in which they present how they work in schools using drama and theatre as a tool for education.
The main aim of these events is to stimulate drama education and its systematic introduction in schools as a part of the future school curriculum.
In November of each year CDOBiH is organizing a Forum of Drama Writers of Bosnia and Herzegovina. The Jury chooses 5 new drama texts and 5 youth theatre groups with 5 directors are invited on a period of one week. Together with the writers, they work to create stage readings of drama texts. After this one-week work, there is a presentation of all 5 groups to a public audience. This joint work aims to help young writers, but also directors and young actors. This work provides them research for new ideas and the opportunity to check ways of continuing to the final product – to the performance.
The Centre for Drama Education of Bosnia and Herzegovina, as a member of IDEA, enjoys co-ordination with this association. With member associations representing more than 50 countries around the globe, the International Drama/Theatre and Education Association aims to promote and advocate drama/theatre as part of a full human education and to provide an international forum for those working as drama/theatre educators throughout the world. Members of each member association are automatically accepted as members of IDEA by virtue of their organization's status as a member association. IDEA's activities include publications, projects, international congresses and meetings, the dissemination of research and the international exchange of drama/theatre workers.
Since 1999, The Centre for Drama Education of Bosnia and Herzegovina is involved in the Art for Social Change programme of the European Cultural Foundation. Through this Programme, the Centre for Drama Education of Bosnia and Herzegovina realised several Projects, which are addressed to the young people of Bosnia and Herzegovina, and the first programme - Play Against Violence 1 - created a network of professionals established in South-Eastern Europe (Albania, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Kosovo, Macedonia, Montenegro, Romania and Serbia).
The Centre for Drama Education of Bosnia and Herzegovina, together with the Mostar Youth Theatre and the Network of Independent Theatres, participated in the second programme - Play Against Violence 2, in the Projects: Network, Steps and To stay or to go, DELTA, The Power of Drama against Juvenile Violence, etc.