Naida Salković: Life in Bosnia and Herzegovina can be better if we all make an effort

We usually have two scenarios when discussing young people in Bosnia and Herzegovina. It is about young ambassadors of our country who improve their knowledge and skills worldwide. Or it is about those who brought what they learned and returned to our country. Naida Salković from Tuzla is precisely like that; she exemplifies self-sacrificing work, perseverance, success, and return after every education in Bosnia.

Naida spoke about her journey, development, and plans for the future of BTS by StorsenDigital.

As the youngest child in the family, I often had to fight for my position. Nevertheless, today I am proud of the path I walked. After finishing elementary school, I enrolled in two high schools in Tuzla, Gymnasium and Music High School, but at the same time, I developed an interest in activism.

Soft skills are important for future healthcare workers.

She successfully finished both schools, and during high school period the first trips and student exchanges happened. In 2017. she enrolled in the Faculty of Medicine at University of Tuzla and became an active member of  the Student Council of the Faculty of Medicine “MEDICUS” and a member of Bosnian and Herzegovinian Medical Students’ Association – BoHeMSA.

“I am primarily active through the committee for medical education. For the last 5-6 years, I have been trying to acquire knowledge and practice besides the usual theory we learn at the Faculty. I focus on soft skills, as mush as possible because these skills are important for future healthcare workers. During the pandemic, I even led classes through the peer-to-peer project, where I was a peer educator for students,” Naida tells us.

She adds that she is most proud of the “Sew it up” project which was done with the rest of the team from here local committee in Tuzla. It is about a project she started with her colleagues, aware that medical students are deprived of practice and skills due to pandemic. Their goal was to learn basic practical medical skills, and in 2021., 80 students went through that education. In addition, they also created educational video content with practical examples to make it easier for students to learn and work. In 2022., the number of people they included increased, so there were 100 students though practical medical skills, and in 2022. they also increased the number of skills that students were taught.

“Last year my activism moved to the international level, so I became a Members Engagement Development Assistant for Europe within International Federation of Medical Students Associations – IFMSA.”

We all need to make an effort

In addition to her busy schedule, Naida also writes scientific papers and articles for medical portals, but she also constantly studies abroad. Her goal, as she states, is to bring knowledge to BiH and invest in herself.

“Life in BiH is lovely, and it can be even more beautiful, but of course, we all need to make an effort.”

On one such trip, she also met our CEO Tarik Altumbabić, based on which the inspiration for this story arose. At the First Faculty of Medicine at Charles University in Prague, through international project, workshops were held, the focus of which was, among other things, mental health, and its preservation.

Aware of various challenges in everyday modern life, especially in the NGO sector, it is worth emphasizing the importance of this topic.

“We also talked about the participation of young people in the fight for global health and universal health coverage. Although it is fairly uniform in Europe, in BiH, not everyone has equal access to healthcare. Therefore, our focus was on how everyone should have equal access to medicines. However, the most beautiful part of all this was meeting 35 new people from all over Europe”, Naida points out.

Young people push and help each other

Considering her achievements, but also her ambitions, the inevitable question was how much the state of Bosnia and Herzegovina recognizes and supports such young talents, to which she honestly answered:

“The state does not recognize enough and does not provide enough opportunities for young people. When I talk to young people from other countries, their student trips are often paid for by the government, while I contacted your company and received some funds. Institutions should show more support so that young people can see that they care about us. So far, the reality is that young people push and help each other, aware that there is a very small chance they will have support from the state.”

The system should support and recognize such young people, but despite the exception of support, what is sure is that Naida as a promising young person will be identified based on her qualities, regardless of state support. And it is, at the same time, the pride of the individual and the collective, but also an appeal to the same to recognize and support young people full of ambition and vision for Bosnia and Herzegovina.