The Bentbaša Initiative: Cleaning Up the Heart of Sarajevo  

“Every big thing in world only comes true when somebody does more than he has to do.” – Hermann Gmeiner 

Earlier this year, Oslobođenje Group invited us to participate in a very noble mission – cleaning up Bentbaša, a beloved spot in Sarajevo that was once home to the city’s most popular pool. 

Located in the heart of Sarajevo, Bentbaša is known as our city’s green oasis. Generations of citizens spent their childhoods here – learning how to swim in the cold Miljacka river, cycling along its long roads, and playing sports in the pleasant shade.

For the longest time, it was known as the perfect getaway from the loud city noise, as it was close and easily accessible. 

Unfortunately, both the water and the environment in Bentbaša have been severely polluted over the past couple of years. As a result, people started turning away this once-great green wonderland. 

United to Restore Bentbaša’s Glory

Having noticed this change, Oslobođenje Group decided to take charge, creating a detailed plan for bringing Bentbaša back to its former glory. They then reached out to various companies to find those willing to join the cause, and when our invitation came, we said yes in a heartbeat. 

Since there is much work to be done, what was needed most for this project was financial assistance. As a socially responsible company, we made a monetary donation to cover some of the costs, and we opened the doors to any of Mistral’s people to volunteer their time doing work on the site.

Among many other things, taking part in this initiative meant giving back to future generations. If there was a slight chance of them seeing even a glimpse of what Bentbaša used to be – why shouldn’t we try and gift them that? 

With Bentbaša’s never-forgotten beauty on our minds, we headed to the old part of the city early one morning at the end of June. Our Aleksandra, Hiba and Lejla joined many volunteers that day, tasked with painting brand new benches.  

This enthusiastic and energetic trio full-heartedly enjoyed helping, daydreaming about future generations who will create sweet memories here. It took no more than 2 hours to finish painting, and Hiba even went an extra mile by showering everyone with useful advice on how to further improve their painting skills. 

Perhaps the most important thing that socially responsible projects provide and that cannot be valued with material goods is the feeling of satisfaction in giving back. With our socially responsible project, together with our project partners, we want to encourage people to take responsibility for negligent actions towards the nature that surrounds us”, our hosts underlined. 

The Beginning of a Very Special Story  

This is just the first phase of many, according to the Oslobođenje team, as this group plans to continue working on improving this area of the city. The first step included cleaning up the area, renovating gazebos and installing and painting benches, while the following steps will be announced and continued in autumn. 

We’re proud to be part of such a monumental and rewarding project, and we look forward to continuing to find ways to contribute to both our internal and external communities.