The other side of Roma stories: Gazmend Januzi

Gazmend Januzi is a successful family man today. Although he finished his regular education a long time ago, he never stopped professional development. He has found time for everything, so even though he works full time and studies part-time, Gazmend comes home smiling, and three little ones come to hug him every day.

“I am married and the happy father of one boy and two girls. In Sarajevo, I finished three high schools, majoring in architectural technician, carpenter-parquet and motor vehicle driver with state exams and passed categories “B”, “C” and “E”. In addition, I have completed an English language course I, II, and III degree, and several IT courses organized by HOPE 87. I am currently a part-time second-year student at the Faculty of Political Science in Sarajevo, Department of Social Work. I am employed in the Public Institution “Cantonal Center for Social Work”, in the position of senior officer for cooperation with national minorities in the mobile team. Somehow I see myself in all this because I want to help people and children who need it. “

Knowing what young Roma face, because he himself has faced discrimination many times, Gazmend is at their service today: with a warm word, material goods, support in every sense. He understands them, sympathizes with them and strives to be their role model.

“Unfortunately, discrimination has always existed and is difficult to eradicate. I have felt indirect discrimination many times and I must admit that it was not easy for me, but since I am a person who always avoids discussions, I also avoided such obstacles. I remember that I was always accepted both in society and by educators (teachers, professors) and this is very important for every child, especially for children of the Roma population who need the support of society. Many Roma know what is best for them, but unfortunately they do not have the opportunity to say what they want. The only thing left for us to fight against discrimination is education. By doing so, we will show that we can be equal with others. We need to get involved as much as possible in NGOs and politics in order for our voice to be heard on a higher level. I joined one of the political parties in 2020 with the aim of making the voice of the Roma heard as loudly as possible. “

Gazmend was born in Kosovo, but he loves and feels Sarajevo as his city. He sees his future, as well as the future of his children, right here.

“I moved to BiH as a baby, when I was only a few months old. I do not want to exchange Bosnia for any other state. I like to visit all other cities as well as other countries, but my favorite city is Sarajevo because I have been here since my earliest childhood until today. I built my life here. “

No one can understand the children with whom Gazmend works better than him. Not only because they are members of the same nation, but because he is guided through life by humanity, humanity, compassion and empathy for others. Proud of what they are, Gazmend and Armend talk about their compatriots only the most beautiful. They, they say, grew up with the song, surrounded by love and a warm smile. They didn’t have much, but they were happy.

“I am proud to be Roma, I am not ashamed of my language and culture. And here where I came today I was thanks to my nationality, of course, my hard work and my parents who were the wind in my back. And I pass this on to my children and I want them to be better than me. My brother Armend and I were raised in a beautiful environment and we are quite attached to each other. What I love about us is that we are happy people, we love to dance and sing. I have always supported changes in culture for the better, whatever culture it is. Changes that would make it easier to fit into the environment, of course. I just want to show with our efforts and work that we can be equal or at least close to others, because we decide our own future and we need to work hard to fight for our goal. If we fight on our own and show that we can succeed, we are a picture for the future of our children. Well, there are no better pictures than you! What makes me happy is that I am a Roma. In translation, the word Roma means man and I am happy to be a man first and foremost. It makes me especially happy to be in this position that allows me to help children who are on the move and at risk from time to time. ”

Gazmend’s advice

“All of us who declare ourselves as Others are on the margins of society and have not been recognized so far, especially when it comes to the Roma population. Due to such situations, I know that prevention of prejudice can only be through education of the Roma population. in the society and environment in which I moved because I had my own attitude and goal. I have always tried to show that Roma can advocate for change and have ambitions. Of course, it also depends on the environment in which the individual is because we often lack the little support of society. “

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