Thursday, 14 April 2022

Meet Vukovar 365, Full of Life – Tomislav and Mara of T&M

April 20, 2022 – The Vukovar business scene here always welcomes new and exciting ideas and products, but appreciates anything handmade, this time made by Tomislav and Mara Ozdanovac of T&M.

They are a young married couple from Vukovar who decided to invest their time, money, and a lot of work into what used to be a hobby yet fulfilled them on multiple levels. After years of careful consideration, saving, planning, and worrying, they finally decided to take the plunge and try and make a living producing wooden household and decorative items, as well as embroidery, both traditional and modern. Their business is still very young, but they are happy with how it’s taken off and feel motivated and inspired to keep going, doing what they do best. You can find them on Facebook, and here are some of their thoughts and opinions.

Tell us about your business, what do you do?

T&M opened a few months ago, headed by Tomislav and Mara Ozdanovac, a young married couple and parents of two girls. We make wooden products such as serving trays, boards, toys, shelves, etc. as well as chiffon and cotton embroidery.


Where did you get the idea and what makes your offer unique?

We decided to turn our previous hobbies into a business and thus bring our products closer to everyone at affordable prices. After a while, we decided to turn our thoughts and conversations into action, and one evening we sat down and created T&M.

What is unique is that we craft everything by hand, though a lot of things have been modernised and it’s possible to have it done by machines. You may have to wait longer for some products, but you can rest assured knowing that you are investing in handicrafts.1.png

What was it like starting such a business in Vukovar? What were the main challenges?

We didn't have any major obstacles because we made sure to save up and acquire our own space and materials before we even started the business.

Do you think that the fact that you are in eastern Croatia influenced your success?

Yes, in a good way. Most of our products are bought outside our city and our county. This was greatly influenced by social networks and the purchasing power of the rest of our beautiful country. Other people tend to think that we are a poor, underdeveloped region, yet our people continue to prove them wrong with their effort and ideas, and we like to believe that so do we.

Are you happy with how your business is developing? What is your perspective for the future?

Seeing as we have only been open for a few months, we are very satisfied with the customer feedback and the number of orders we’ve received. You never know what the future holds. We are still a small business, but we hope that time will do its thing and that we will become recognized more widely, which gives us a lot of motivation for the future.


What opportunities are there in our city and region? 

There are many small businesses and craftsmen in our area who work and strive to improve our living standards and the offer in this part of Croatia. The opportunities are many, it's just a matter of how many customers will recognize the work and the ideas behind it.

What is your view of other small businesses in Vukovar?

In principle, everyone works for themselves, but we support each other and encourage the growth and development of "the small ones".

Finally, tell us about life in Vukovar. What do you like most, what would you say to all potential visitors?

Vukovar is a city tailored to every person who appreciates peace, does not like crowds and the hustle and bustle of large urban areas. You will love the generosity and hospitality of our fellow citizens, nature, rivers, promenades, museums... We tell future visitors to enjoy our city and the benefits it provides because now they are numerous.

For more, check out our lifestyle section.

Wednesday, 30 March 2022

Meet Vukovar 365, Full of Life – Matea Mađaroš

March 30, 2022 – Meet Matea Mađaroš, a young architect from Vukovar who turned down an interview with Universal Studios in Florida because she was already employed with another kickass company. 

The fact that a lot of young people end up leaving Croatia, especially the east of the country, to build a good and steady future is unfortunately well known. And as if the pressures are not enough, they are often met with judgment for not wanting to stay and keep fighting with everyone else. Yes, Croatia is developing and so is the east of the country, but it still is hard. And sometimes the reasons for that are very different as well. We spoke to a young architect from Vukovar, whose move to Denmark was purely a career choice and not survival. It was an attempt to play with the big guys, to learn and to reach heights to match her talent, ambitions, and hard work. And it’s working out wonderfully.

Meet Matea, a multitalented young lady who is known in Vukovar for her skills, dedication to art and friendly smile. She is the girl behind the keyboard making it produce wonderful sounds. It started when during primary school she attended music school and became obsessed with the piano. From a very young age, the only thing that was on her mind as a possible career path was music. She played at festivals, competitions and with choirs, including the church and the city choir in Vukovar. By the end of her primary education, however, she became interested in a different form of art. She then decided to keep music to herself and instead make her contribution to society through architecture and design. She went on to study architecture on the undergraduate level in Split. The focus laid heavily on developing the conceptual thought, and Matea found that very helpful. For her master’s studies she moved to Zagreb. By that time, she had already presented some of her projects and won awards. She stayed the course and currently works with one of the world’s leading architecture firms, the Copenhagen-based Bjarke Ingels Group. We spoke to her to see how she did it, where she is now, and to get her views on Vukovar and Croatia as well. 

Tell us about your first projects.

After my undergraduate studies in Split I had the perfect first client. Father Ivica of the Church of St. Philip and James in Vukovar asked me to design the candleholder for the newly renovated areas. I was hesitant about the idea since it had a lot more to do with product design than architecture, but I am so grateful for the opportunity as it really opened my eyes and made me realize that I can do it and that I can expand my skillset and really let creativity flow. I truly appreciate that Father Ivica gave me complete freedom and accepted all my ideas. He saw value in what I created. On my last year, another project followed where I designed the souvenir and ticket shop for the church’s museum. I was inspired by the museum itself so we decided to arrange the shop in a similar way where the souvenirs would be presented as exhibits in a museum, and the actual products for sale would stand in the background. Again, I was met with approval and the project was quickly finished and is now in full operation.

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Your graduate thesis was an interesting proposal, can you tell us about that?

I started thinking about Vukovar and I realized that one of the biggest unresolved issues there was situated right in the middle of the most valuable area – the old hotel Dunav, which now stands in ruins without any purpose. I became curious and started exploring the possibilities. I knew that it did not make much sense to just go with a massive hotel and that it needed other facilities, so I decided to make it into a conference centre as well.  As for the design itself, I wanted it to be an extension of the architecture of Vukovar so I based it on the famous arcades of the city centre.

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After I graduated, I even had an opportunity to present my project to the mayor. Though he did like the idea, the question remains of who the investor would be for such a project. There are a few different sides to the story, and it’s really about politics. It might be very slow, if at all possible, to reach an agreement and get started, but my main goal was to at least get the conversation going. I heard that the discussion is indeed happening and that makes me happy. 

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Why Denmark, how did that happen? 

At the beginning of my studies our professors presented the largest companies in the world, including Bjarke Ingels Group. I started thinking about how great it would be to work for a company like that, where it’s all about creativity and play. So many architectural offices are places where they simply churn out projects. I am more interested in architecture that brings something new to the scene, that changes perceptions. There were two ways of landing a job like that – coming from an Ivy League School or shooting directly for the stars. Obviously, I had to go for the latter. Just before my graduation, I created a portfolio of all my projects and sent it over to all the top companies along with an open application letter. The reply from BIG came in two days later, then an interview, and two weeks later I was already in Copenhagen. I was brought on as a trainee architect, but I was so lucky to have been in excellent teams with some very important people which gave me a chance to work with the very top of the company early on. After a year I was promoted to a junior architect. Ah yes, around that time they also invited me for an interview with Universal Studios, but I had to turn it down since I had already accepted the job with BIG and I was happy with that.


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Were your job expectations met?

I love working here, the atmosphere is very friendly, and we have a lot of fun. Most of our days are spent discussing ideas and just talking, and that is exactly what it should be. It is an open space where everyone is truly equal, and everyone can participate in any project. I worked on a couple different projects for opera houses, which is incredibly rare in the world of architecture. One of my projects has already been finished – the city square in Esbjerg in Denmark.

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How is life in Denmark?

I know that there are some negative opinions of living abroad, but my situation very different. I left because I knew this was the right place for me to develop my skills. I'm not here with the goal to acquire enough money to buy a fancy car and move back. I am truly growing and learning. I'm open to all cultures and other people. There are 36 different nationalities at my office. I lead the most normal life here – I have a partner and friends, and I have my family and other friends in Croatia. I do miss home, but I don’t have an urge to leave Denmark right now. As for the country itself, I would say that it’s apparent that they are richer than Croatia. What I like the most is the fact that a lot of thought is put into appearances as well as the functioning of their cities. 

What are your plans for the future, thoughts on going back to Vukovar?

I am open to anything – this company is my beginning and not my end. I am here to learn and connect with people. I do have ambition to eventually go my own direction and start designing beyond architectural boundaries. I am not bound by location either, and a lot of people misunderstand that as non-patriotic tendencies. I love our country and I love the people there. Vukovar is a place where I will always go back and will always stay in touch with. I follow the developments and I can see some new projects that look exciting. There are many ways to contribute to your home whether you are physically present or not. With that being said, I will say that if the same opportunity presented itself in Vukovar or any other part of the world, I would choose Vukovar and my roots. 

What do you think about how Vukovar is developing and the direction it’s going?

This is a bit sensitive. I will say that there is this mental barrier present, you can sense the atmosphere of our past. Building beautiful buildings and large monuments will not solve the problems. We need to work a lot more on the relationships between people, achieving balance and creating a positive atmosphere first. At the same time, with other aspects I feel like the passive period has ended and everything is now starting to bloom. As far as the architecture of the city is concerned, I do see potential in future projects, and I think that everything is going in the right direction. 

I will emphasize that great potential lies in Vukovar and its surrounding area. It is certainly the place with the greatest tourist potential in the region. It lies on the largest river in Europe, it’s at a crossroads of countries and regions. It’s steeped in nature, surrounded by nature parks, and national parks are nearby. Vukovar has always been a source of inspiration for me, and I want to give back. I hope that there are other people who feel the same way. As long as we are aware that we need to give back, everything will be okay.

For more, check out our dedicated lifestyle section.

Thursday, 17 March 2022

Meet Vukovar 365, Full of Life – PRONI Centre for Social Education

March 17, 2022 – Meet Goran, the director of the youth department at PRONI, Vukovar’s centre for social education. 

Though their name and title might seem a little ambiguous, a quick visit to their website has the word youth stand out more than anything else. This is quite indicative of what PRONI stands for and what they have been doing for over 20 years. With their primary focus on youth work, which includes working directly with teens and young adults aged 18-30, as well as working with trainers and educators who are involved in such work, the main goals of the centre are the improvement of quality of life of the youth and their social awareness and inclusion. Primarily through EU social programs, in PRONI they have partnered up with the relevant institutions to promote informal youth education, mobility, and volunteer work as the modern values and ways of achieving everyone’s full potential.

We spoke to Goran, PRONI’s youth director, who told us all about what PRONI does and what the youth in Vukovar still need.

What is PRONI, how long has it been here, and what is it that you do daily?

PRONI was first officially registered in 1998, which means that we have been going strong for well over 20 years now. With our first office in Vukovar, we also opened offices in Osijek and in Sisak. The one in Sisak, unfortunately, had to be closed, but we did spend a good 15 or so years working there as well. Our focus is on direct work with the youth regardless of their status (students, unemployed, employed, etc.). This means that we also work with youth workers and institutions, including city councils, schools, and other organisations involved in social work. We are currently running 16 projects and our days are packed full of activities. We are hosting 2 Erasmus participants here in Vukovar, who spend their days volunteering, studying, and learning Croatian!

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What are your long-term goals?

Our mission is to improve the quality of life of the youth through opportunities to develop their skills, abilities, and competencies. We strive to achieve this through practical work in volunteering and social projects, as well as their inclusion in a so-called structured dialogue. More precisely, in cooperation with the city council of Vukovar and through the input we receive directly from the youth, we implement the city youth program. The program does not consider the cultural and entertainment aspect of life, but also employment opportunities, education, and public facilities to provide nurture hobbies and interests.

How do you reach the youth of Vukovar?

PRONI and its friends have a way of discovering each other. We have set up an info centre for them to easily reach us on social media or in our physical space where we always keep our doors open and the atmosphere warm and welcoming. We try to stay on top of social media and follow the trends and reach our audience across all the trending platforms. We have set up our little corners in schools as well and have engaged teachers to be our ambassadors. The students themselves also spread the word quite effectively, as they really enjoy many of our activities and are excited to come back with friends.

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What are the main projects of the Vukovar branch right now, what makes you proud?

The dialogue that we have successfully established between the youth in our city and the city council is something that we are quite proud of. The long-term results of our work are also starting to show, which is one of the most rewarding aspects of our work. Our Youth Advisory Board serves for better information exchange and resource networking with all the relevant institutions. As I mentioned, this includes the city council, the national employment office, the Ministry of Internal Affairs, the local library and more. Possibly the best thing that has come out of our initiatives was the organic and spontaneous formation of School Volunteering Clubs where students are the managers and planners. They enjoy autonomy, and it keeps them motivated to keep learning, developing, and connecting.

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Which groups would you like to invite for better cooperation?

Firstly, I would like to say that we are very thankful for our partners and all the amazing work that we have done together so far. We do not lack institutional support in the physical sense, but we do think that the school curriculum should follow suit. Schools should work a lot more on encouraging critical thinking, activism, quality management of free time. Students do not have enough autonomy when it comes to extra-curricular activities where they are often offered what is available based on the teachers’ schedules and not on their interests. Schools should also be involved in, or at least promote informal education a lot more.

Is Vukovar a good place for the youth, how do your foreign volunteers perceive it?

Of course, Vukovar is excellent! It is quite small but practical. All the facilities are easily available and often within walking distance. The standard is still much cheaper than in a lot of other European cities and thanks to PRONI’s unique position in the city, there are a lot of things that we can provide for free. Our volunteers find it interesting, though different, usually coming from much bigger cities. The main things that they like about Vukovar include feeling safe, secure, and accepted. They also find that sometimes things here seem a lot simpler than in their home countries. They are excited to visit, and they leave fulfilled and happy. Another great thing for our foreign volunteers is that everything we do is integrated and we provide them with additional activities and free language courses.

What message would you like to send?

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Just that we are here and that what we provide should be used. Youth exchange is a wonderful thing and possibly one of the most enriching experiences in life. In our areas, it is still unknown and not promoted enough. Sometimes there is a fear of this unknown, but everyone should know that the process has become very smooth, and I would like to encourage young people to step forward and grab the opportunity to learn and travel.

For more, check out our lifestyle section 

Wednesday, 9 March 2022

Meet Vukovar, 365 Full of Life – Humanitarian Organisation Duga Vukovar

March 9, 2022 – Meet Jasna, Tijana, Tamara, and Nevenka, the presidents, administrators, and employees of the Humanitarian Organisation Duga Vukovar, who spoke about those in need in Vukovar, how they provide it, and how we all can do the same.

Duga Vukovar was founded back in 2013 to provide help to those who need it the most. This includes people who were marginalised for various reasons, but in most cases due to unemployment which leads to poverty. The elderly who live alone and in poverty are in an especially unfavourable position. Duga Vukovar has had a long tradition of workshops, programs and projects that would engage the most vulnerable members of our society, be it through education, financial support or by providing a place to enjoy some much needed friendly company while expressing ones' creativity. While Vukovar is developing and attracting visitors thanks to its modern infrastructure, interesting locations, awesome food and genuinely the nicest people, organisations like Duga exist to remind us that there are still many who haven't been able to live their full potential.

Tell us about the organisation. What do you do, which groups do you help, what inspired you?

Many demographic changes have happened in recent years, such as negative natural population movements, continuous emigration, unemployment of young adults, low pensions, increasing poverty rates. All this led to an increasing number of people whose incomes were insufficient for a decent life, especially in the elderly population. Often, they cannot even afford basic dietary and hygienic necessities, and unfortunately, some of them have no income whatsoever. In 2013, we decided to establish the Humanitarian Organisation Duga Vukovar to promote the quality of life and protect the human rights of the most vulnerable groups in our society, primarily those on the brink of poverty and the elderly. 

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In 2014, the so-called Vukovar Social Self-Service was founded through our organisation. It operates on the principle of collecting donations of food and hygiene items and their continuous distribution to the most vulnerable residents of the city of Vukovar. In accordance with the collected donations, we strive to continuously ensure the distribution of food on a daily basis every month of the year. This helped manage the organisation in a better way and ensured that we had more time to dedicate to each individual. It also helped build a better relationship and give people a sense of security, trust and belonging.

The self-service cares for about 600 families, which is roughly 1,500 people. Its clients are people living on the edge of poverty, elderly people with low pensions, users of social welfare, single mothers and fathers, people with zero or very low incomes. We noticed that in addition to the lack of financial resources, there is also a risk of social exclusion mostly for elderly people, as well as a lack of assistance in performing daily activities.

What is your mission, what are your main goals?

Our mission is to create a just and compassionate society of equal opportunities for every individual. Our goal is to improve the lives of the elderly and people at risk of social exclusion by having them actively participate in our projects and programs such as education and counselling programs on financial literacy, consumer rights, social and health rights which could help reduce health care costs. We also provide opportunities to learn about social care, health and disease prevention, entertainment, socio-cultural content and workshops, as well as excursions. We provide a space where people can actively spend their free time, increase their productivity and creativity, nurture their talents. We want them to feel a sense of belonging and empower them to develop a positive self-image. In addition to all that, we want to continue to network, develop and strengthen our partnerships, include new donors and continue working with our old associates, strengthen the capacity of the organisation and provide employment for the disadvantaged groups.

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Do you accept volunteers and which groups would you like to activate more?

We are especially grateful for our volunteers who enrich the work of our organisation. It is important to encourage all social groups to be actively involved in volunteer work because it is the responsibility of each of us to be active and responsible individual who participates and drives positive change in society. Of course, we would like the younger population of volunteers to be more involved. This would help shrink the growing generation gap with prejudice and stereotypes they might have towards the elderly, which can also lead to violent behaviour. Every stage of human life has its unique advantages and disadvantages. We can always learn from each other, pass on the knowledge and experience to future generations, create memories. We need to be more supportive of each other.

What is it like to run an organisation like this in Vukovar? Does the fact that you are in eastern Croatia affect your success?

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Once an industrial center, today the Vukovar-Srijem County is one of the least developed areas in Croatia, and Vukovar is one of the poorest cities. Still, if we look back at the starting days of our organisation, we do see significant progress. We keep growing and developing, and we want to expand our activities for the benefit of the wider community. As our organisation is a non-profit, we depend mostly on donations and projects. Unfortunately, such sources of funding are uncertain, with a limited duration. While the organisation is continuously making progress, the existing space has become too small and inadequate for quality implementation of our project activities and programs, hindering the work of our employees which should be a lot more pleasant. Yet, there are so many plans that we can and want to implement. Our biggest challenge at the moment is finding an adequate space. We are aware that any space that is unused and needs to be put into operation requires significant financial expenses, and as a non-profit, we are not able to cover that right now.

Would you like to participate in the Vukovar Card initiative? 

We would indeed like to participate in the Vukovar Card initiative. Vukovar has a lot to offer. Primary and secondary school students from different parts of Croatia visit us often, and they even help with donations for our social self-service. We would like their visits, as well as the visits of tourists to our city and our organisation to last longer for them to better experience all the beauty of the city. Unfortunately, most visits are only day trips.

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What are the ways organisations and individuals can help?

Our doors are always open to all who want to visit us and get to know us better.


Humanitarna udruga Duga Vukovar

OIB: 89493546468

Sajmište 23, 32000 Vukovar

Working hours:

MON - FRI - 07:00 - 15:00

Contact person: Tamara Mikulić 099 520 2211 / Tijana Prokić - 099 750 3734

Visit our website:

FB page: Humanitarna udruga Duga Vukovar

Instagram: Humanitarnaudrugaduga.vukovar

If you wish to financially support the work of our organisation, donations can be paid to the account:

IBAN: HR72 2340 0091 1105 9315 8


Privredna banka Zagreb

Payment description: Financial support to the organisation (Financijska potpora Udruzi)

If you wish to help the work of our Social Self-Service, donations can be paid to the account:

IBAN: HR42 2340 0091 5106 3886 7

For more, check out our lifestyle section.

Thursday, 3 March 2022

Meet Vukovar 365, Full of Life – Lucija and Josip Salaić of Vu-Creator

March 3, 2022 – Meet Lucija and Josip of Vu-Creator, a young couple from Tovarnik near Vukovar who have devoted themselves to the sustainable production of some of the most wonderful furniture and toys for the young ones. 

Tovarnik, once a year the home of Croatia’s biggest pumpkins and an open-air fine dining experience of ox on the spit, paired with some outstanding local rakija. Dessert, of course, pumpkin, sometimes apples and walnuts in a roll. All part of the famous autumn festival. What does the place offer outside of this magnificent event? Plenty. For now, we’ll skip discussing nature, location, food, and we’ll move straight to people and their stories. 

Josip and Lucija Salaić are a young couple who decided to build their careers in something they truly enjoy and care about. Taking inspiration from their own little daughters and from the fact that woodworking was Josip’s true passion, they started designing and manufacturing wooden furniture and toys. Their goal was to create something sustainable, natural, and lasting that would keep the little ones happy. And so, Vu-Creator was born. They design all their pieces according to their client’s wishes, while all the shaping, painting, and assembling is done by hand. Their guiding principles are those of uniqueness and quality. We spoke to Lucija to find out about how it came to be, where it’s headed, and more. 

Tell us about your business, what do you do?

At Vu-Creator we design and manufacture solid wood children's furniture. Most times we use ash, and all our raw materials come from within Croatia. We produce our own designs, but we also work with our clients to create details that make our furniture unique and personalised. The entire range is made by hand or semi-mechanically and painted by hand with eco-friendly paint.

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Where did you get the idea and what makes your offer unique?

We discovered our talents over time and realised that we could make something for our children all on our own. Something that would be of excellent quality, long-lasting, and tailor-made just for them. The end result of our efforts really excited us, and we decided that we would not stop just at furniture for our children.

What was it like starting such a business in Vukovar? What were the main challenges?

The main challenges were prejudice and lack of information through verified sources. It took us a while to find the right suppliers or the right audience to introduce the quality that comes with a beautiful design.

Do you think that the fact that you are in eastern Croatia influenced your success?

Not in the least. We just didn’t think about it. We have adapted to the needs of the market, our products are sold online, and by the time the clients pick up their products they don’t even see the address where the furniture came from.

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Are you happy with how your business is developing? What is your perspective for the future?

We love what we do and we hope that this love will grow. We also hope that on days when it becomes too difficult to remember the goal, the smiles on the faces of children who receive the little furniture made just for them will keep us going. We are open to anything, the sky is the limit. Even if the doors of Vu-Creator have to close at some point, our hearts remain open to new challenges.

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What opportunities are there in our city and region? 

Depends on the ambitions of the individual. We think that the location of origin can stimulate or demotivate the start of a project but should certainly not be the reason to change one’s mind. Vukovar offers many possibilities if you want to discover them.

What is your view of other small businesses in Vukovar?

There is no competition, which is the one thing that scares most new businesses. We never come across anyone in a hostile mood. All our colleagues and friends jumped in, just like we did to help them. The atmosphere is truly one of healthy entrepreneurship. It is important to have money circulating and supporting the economy, and not just holding on to your own assets. Mutual support is paramount.

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Finally, tell us about life in Vukovar. What do you like most, what would you say to all potential visitors?

Vukovar offers perspective. Though many leave the east, many of us do stay here, and we are the ones who believe in the future of our city. Vukovar is all of us, and as long as that is the case it will be a beautiful and special city. We love this peace that many still seek, we love the togetherness. Always aware of the weight of the city's past and never forgetting what our fathers and grandfathers gave up for the homeland, we look ahead and use that gratitude as an incentive and motivation to keep going.

For more, check out our lifestyle section.

Tuesday, 22 February 2022

Meet Vukovar 365, Full of Life – Krešimir Herceg of VukovART

February 22, 2022 - Meet Krešimir Herceg, the co-founder of VukovART, a movement that has helped place Vukovar on the street art map of the world and turned the city into an open-air art gallery.

From 2017 onwards, Vukovar has been getting richer and richer in street art, with murals adorning buildings in all Vukovar’s neighbourhoods and 3D art attracting the looks of many on and along the bridges of Vukovar. The art has become a big part of the city’s visual identity, inspiring visits, hashtags, even tours and events like marathons following the path of the murals. 

In 2022, the residents of Vukovar, along with its many guests, already know to anticipate a city centre full of life, laughter, and fun, with kids creating chalk artwork on the pavement, grown-ups painting walls, and other grown-ups discussing art and tourism. For a few weeks in May and June, the city becomes a colourful workshop of art. And when it’s all said and done, we are left with some beautiful art to love and cherish and proudly present to our visitors. We found out how it all came to be, why it’s there and where it’s going. We spoke to Krešimir, whom we know as the man behind the movement. He describes himself as a marketing enthusiast working on several tourism projects, and the results have been pretty awesome. Let’s find out all about the ideas that set it in motion.

Tell us about the organizers of VukovART.

Filip and Krešo are primarily two friends who work together on several ideas and projects. One is just a marketing enthusiast, and Filip is the only Croatian 3D street artist.

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What inspired VukovART?

Although VukovART started in 2017, the whole story began a year before, while the idea of ​​a street art festival had been brewing for a while. Filip Mrvelj, the only Croatian 3D street artist, and I had worked together on several projects. So it was not surprising when in 2016, he called and suggested a collaboration on the first 3D painting in Vukovar on a bridge over the river Vuka. During our time in Vukovar, it rained constantly, and we ended up only having one day to create the paintings. We spoke to the city council about all our ideas, including the festival. Filip managed to finish the painting, and after it gained significant media attention, we officially presented the concept of ​​a street art festival to the City of Vukovar. They loved it.

Can you tell us more about the project?

VukovART is a street art festival. During a few weeks in May and June, it attracts some of the biggest names of the international street art scene. So far, the Vukovar open-air gallery has adopted 33 pieces of street art created by top world artists. We have hosted names like Zabou, Wild Drawing, Vera Bugatti, Juandres Vera, Artez, BustArt, and many others. The work of top Croatian artists can also be found in Vukovar, including Eugen Varzić, OKO, Lonac, Tea Jurišić, and Šumski. When we create our invitation lists, we are guided by the rule of excellence. There is no classic "open call", instead we try to get the best artists of the moment following the set criteria.

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VukovART is a new concept in the cultural life of Vukovar. It promotes Vukovar as a place that accepts all artists as creators of new values. Also, this concept changes the city's visual identity and makes it a more beautiful, urban, and modern place to live. The painted areas are also a tourist attraction. Vukovar, a port on the Danube, is now becoming a harbour of art – an open-air gallery accessible to all. In addition to this artistic part as the basis of VukovART, we have been organizing an accompanying programme of children’s workshops, concerts, panel discussions, lectures and gatherings, and exhibitions in recent years. For example, during the last VukovART, we enjoyed concerts by Mia Dimšić, Vatra, and Akvarel, a band from Osijek. Many visited, including Robert Knjaz, Dušan Bućan, Davor Gobac, and other familiar faces of the Croatian creative scene. There was a painting workshop and chalk drawing one in the main square for the little ones; we organised bike rides and more.

It is important to note that the City of Vukovar largely stood behind the festival, and so did our sponsor PPD Vukovar, who keeps investing in Vukovar’s community.

What is the significance of such a project for Vukovar and Slavonia?

From the beginning, we believed that VukovART would be of great importance for all of Slavonia, and this was confirmed. Many still perceive Croatia’s east as a very rural region, not to say that we shouldn’t be proud of our traditions and customs. Yet Slavonia is much more than that. The nature is extraordinary, its cultural and gastronomic offer yet to be discovered. VukovART is the only project of this type in Slavonia that has practically become a tourist product and is one of few in this part of Europe.

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The artists themselves are delighted with the culture, the city's cleanliness, the kindness of the people, the energy of the festival, and filled with emotions about Vukovar's past. When they go home, they keep telling the story of Vukovar and Slavonia, a Croatian region still unknown to many.

What were the main goals, did you meet them?

The main goal was to create a success story for locals and tourists. We believe that we have managed to meet all the goals in creating a different urban tourist product. As a result, Vukovar has been placed on the map of street art cities of the world and has become recognized for top art of top world artists. People's reactions on social media and their posts from touring the open-air gallery are proof that we are on the right track.

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Another goal was education. The gallery showcases different styles and techniques. Our many workshops help educate the younger population primarily, while through seminars, we all learn from the best Croatian creatives (Dušan Bućan, Robert Knjaz, Domagoj Jakopović - Ribafish, Dubravko Mataković). In our panel discussions, we show the best examples in practice. With all of this, we believe that the goals we set have not only been achieved but exceeded.

Will there be a VukovART in 2022?

VukovART is coming this year, but we are still preparing the program, and it should come out sometime in May. As it all stands, the world's top street art names are coming back, and the program will be dense and exciting.

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Apart from the art that now adorns our city, why is Vukovar worth visiting?

Firstly, Vukovar is a place that evokes pride and respect for all the sacrifices it has gone through. However, people need to be aware that Vukovar is a beautiful city that lives, where you can enjoy some amazing things. The Vučedol Culture Museum is the best example. It is one of the most important cultural points of Western Europe. The Eltz Castle is magnificent. Many do not even know that Lavoslav Ružička, the first Croatian Nobel Prize winner came from Vukovar. The Danube, its promenade, the park forest Adica, the baroque city centre, and the newly opened Vukovar Water Tower. Besides, the gastronomic offer is getting better and better… Vukovar more than deserves a visit!

Have you done any similar projects in other cities in Slavonia? Are there more coming?

We have done cultural and tourist projects, mainly in Slavonski Brod. From the one in memory of Ivana Brlić – Mažuranić to the legendary bicycle race Mali Pariz – Klakar. Our biggest recent project was CoolTour Lab, funded by the EU. We organized workshops for young people throughout the year. There is also the Bikademy project, an innovative cycling tourism project in Slavonia, which is developing beyond Croatian borders. We keep planning, always coming up with new ideas, but we will see where it takes us. Right now, we are focusing on a few things that are already in motion, like VukovART and Bikademy.

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What does the future hold for tourism in eastern Croatia?

We hope for a promising future, and we hope to contribute to it. Indeed, it will take a lot of work, learning, and marketing to build a community. Slavonia and Baranja are a destination with all that a tourist destination should have. It makes us happy that it is slowly becoming recognized as an excellent and unexplored destination, and the potential is huge. The east of Croatia is also attractive for active tourism, and I am sure that the tourist offer will rise to a very high level in just a few years.

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Home is where the heart is.

For more, check out our lifestyle section.

Tuesday, 15 February 2022

Meet Vukovar 365, Full of Life: Viktorija Matin of Vukovarski Leptirići

February 15, 2022 – Meet Viktorija Matin, the founder of the Vukovarski Leptirići parents’ association for children with developmental disabilities.

The butterfly – a symbol of beauty, change, fragility, yet such resilience. The Vukovarski Leptirići (Vukovar Butterflies) parents’ association cares for children who are just as fragile and just as resilient – those with developmental disabilities. Founded in 2011, the association has been providing psychological and social care for this vulnerable group. They employ over 35 people, caring for more than 228 members. One hundred thirty-three people currently volunteer with them, but they are always looking for more. They have been successful in delivering more than 60 projects. Their mission and vision revolve around inclusion, ensuring that children with disabilities participate in daily life, sports activities, cultural programs, and more. 

I was fortunate to pay them a visit on a day when the little ones got to meet their therapy dog, Black. After a delicious and nutritious breakfast of sandwiches, fruit, and veggies, we shared some candy and got ready for a new friend to come in. The kids were just the happiest, most well-behaved, considerate little bunch. Their carers and teachers were just as lovely and warm, radiating positivity and love that they feel for their jobs and all the children they work with. They did seem worried, though. The projects through which the association draws funding are irregular, sometimes suspended after approval, and simply not enough. The butterflies are faced with new challenges on the daily. 

Viktorija, their founder, emphasizes that while their space and equipment are among the best in Croatia, the butterflies could use all the donations to keep their carers and teachers and ensure that they’ve had adequate training and education. Viktorija told us all about their work, achievements, and struggle. So we invite you to have a read, think of the butterflies, and maybe donate that morning coffee towards a better future for the ones whose future depends on you.

Tell us about the association. 

Firstly, let me present us through the symbolic name of the association. The butterfly represents metamorphosis, complete transformation, and ultimate freedom. It is the only creature capable of completely changing its genetic structure during its dramatic transformation process. Thus, it represents rebirth and transition to a magnificent new life. Because of its fragility, on the other hand, the butterfly also symbolizes courage, which is needed to make changes in its growth and development. It is also a symbol of hope. When we first established the association, at the end of 2011, children with disabilities needed help with their transformation; they needed courage and hope. We supported parents who didn’t know where to begin. We had courage and hope, and it brought us this far. Starting from a fight against discrimination that children with disabilities face in every aspect of their lives, we have become a place to receive all the necessary therapy and support.

We have achieved the basic goals of the association, improving their quality of life through medical and social care for children with disabilities and their families. We can continually improve the situation, though, always do more and work harder. It is all worth it for the children to feel less lonely, to make progress through laughter and play, for our families to live better lives.

What are your main goals?

In 2017, the association became a provider of social services in the field of psychosocial support. We signed an agreement with the Ministry of Labor, Pension System, Family and Social Policy on the implementation of psychosocial support through the following services:

- Psychological support through Neurofeedback training provided by three educated neurofeedback practitioners (advanced level)

- Psychological support provided by a psychologist

- Exercises of everyday skills with a psychologist and an occupational therapist

- Sensory integration conducted by physiotherapists and sensory integration therapists

- Kinesitherapy and sports and recreational activities conducted by two physiotherapists

- Speech therapy conducted by a speech therapist

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One of our projects is a daycare for children with disabilities, those of lower financial status, and adopted children to ensure better socialization for all of them. The kids are more than happy to spend those 4 hours per day with us, enjoy the company of their friends, and the individual work with education and development specialists who care for them. Eventually, they become ready to start kindergarten or school.

For several years now, we have been sourcing funding through projects from the Ministry of Science and Education to implement methods like Tomatis and Soundsory. Valuable, sophisticated equipment and education were financed to provide therapy through music. There are only 8 Tomatis practitioners in all of Croatia. The method revolves around children listening to filtered Mozart music and Gregorian chants while playing, affecting the middle ear, their balance, and their brain. This helps them learn and acquire social, language, and motor skills much faster than they usually would. Our other projects include sports activities and various workshops such as art, creativity, music, dance, and play.

We use every chance to apply for new projects and provide vocational education, equipment, and activities for our members. From the very beginning, we have implemented different forms of therapy, including therapeutic riding and swimming. We also employ several new teaching assistants every year. Currently, the biggest challenge we are facing is funding for the project 'Let’s grow, play and learn together!' for about 40 children who need additional help and support through individual therapy, assisted learning, and quality leisure time. Unfortunately, it ends in three months, and the children will be left without the needed support. We launched a crowdfunding campaign on Čini pravu stvar where we can hopefully collect donations to carry on with the project.

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Do you accept volunteers, and which groups would you invite to join you?

It is possible to volunteer short-term or long-term through specific projects or regular activities. It all depends on the skills and interests of our volunteers and the current needs and capabilities of the association. Volunteers have always been an essential part of our work. We would certainly like to see more people with a background in education, psychologists, counselors, and therapists.

What is it like to run such an association in Vukovar? Does the fact that you are in the east of Croatia affect your success?

Nowadays, children with disabilities in Vukovar are not taboo like a few years ago. Professional therapy with the help of sophisticated equipment is available, along with adequately equipped spaces for sensory integration and kinesitherapy. We would say that it is slowly becoming easier to live here as a child with disabilities. We are still working on it; we are constantly reminding people that we are here, that diversity needs to be accepted, that tolerance and equal opportunities must become the norm. There was a time when we were alone, and life was very hard. These days it is easier with all the institutional support, and we take this as proof that together we can achieve a lot in any aspect of life. We were able to renovate our space of 579 m2 and install quality equipment for numerous activities through national and EU projects. There is still a lot to be fixed, primarily the roof of our sports hall. We struggle with funding our projects, and our advances are often late. On top of that, currently, there are no tenders for big projects and our competition is quite challenging in other cities. We are still hopeful that we will receive the necessary donations to continue our programs.

What would the butterflies of Vukovar say to the world?

Our guiding thought is: "If you respect all our rights, we will change the world!"

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I want to invite all parents with the same issues to accept the new situation or any difficulties their children might be facing and to live life fully. Include your children in all the programs, travel with them, socialize and integrate, do not allow them to remain on the margins. They are different, not less. Their disability is not shameful. It can happen to anyone, and that is why we need to be united in selflessly helping those who desperately need our help. We are not worth less just because we have children with disabilities.

What makes Vukovarski Leptirići unique in Croatia?

The association operates in the space of ​​579 m2, obtained for use from the City of Vukovar. Although the space was in bad condition, we are completing the renovation, and we will have a beautiful, ample, and tidy space equipped with the best equipment and sophisticated devices. We invest a lot in the education of our staff. We use assistive technology, including simple communicators and even a Tobii device for eye tracking. We have managed to connect vertically and horizontally with the support of the state and local governments and incredibly hardworking and persistent parents who have elevated this association to an incredible level. It’s simple – the secret of success lies in the community! 

How can we help?

You can donate money for our ongoing campaign on Čini pravu stvar. To get to know us a little better, you can visit our Facebook page or our official website

For more, check out our lifestyle section.

Sunday, 6 February 2022

Meet Vukovar 365, Full of Life: Saša Salamon of Code Consulting

February 6, 2022 – Meet Saša Salamon, the founder of Code Consulting, a software development company that found its home on the banks of the Danube. Not only have they been successful in establishing an excellent brand, but the team is also constantly growing, and Saša is inviting all potential candidates to step forward and become part of his amazing team.

If you've been following the Vukovar 365 series, you've met some of its creative souls, sports enthusiasts, entrepreneurs, overall impressive, engaging, and positive examples of the human species. Lucky we are to have them. Hopefully, the series broadened your views and understandings and made you look at Vukovar as a breathing city, indeed full of life and ready to face the future. And no image of the future would be complete without the IT guys powering it all. Time to learn about the IT scene in Vukovar and the fantastic team (Corgi included) behind it all. 

Code Consulting is a reasonably young but reputable software development company whose home is no less than this humble town on the Danube. It was brought to life by Saša Salamon, who left a full-time permanent job (the dream of many Croatians) to start his own business in 2013. Since then, Code Consulting grew and established its position mainly within the medical industry. Saša spoke about the beginnings, the now, the future. He finds Vukovar to be the perfect place to live and grow. Asked about the Vukovar Card idea, he does say that the schedule is packed full and that our guests might need a break. One could argue that this only shows how much there is to offer. It also highlights one of the more important points of the true Slavonian (and Croatian) lifestyle – take it easy. Focus on the real values in life and appreciate those around you, at least as much as Saša appreciates his team.

Tell us about Code Consulting - what do you do?

CodeCons is a team of about 60 web and mobile application development professionals. We mainly deal with solutions in the medical industry for clients in the US. Our team consists of experts in different areas of software development, from architecture, design, development, testing, infrastructure... thus we can cover the entire course of software development, from the initial idea to production. We work mainly on long-term projects that last for several years and constantly evolve.

How did it all start?

It started a long time ago, about 10 years. I had a permanent job in a large company, but I would spend my free time programming, mostly freelance, with various clients from all over the world. My clients were quite happy with my work and wanted to continue our collaboration, so I decided to start doing it full-time at one point. As the business expanded, I kept looking for and hiring more people, so it all kept unfolding.

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What was it like to start such a business in Vukovar? What were the main challenges?

IT is a location-independent industry. Whether it's Vukovar, Zagreb, Varaždin... it doesn't matter where you are. The team is important; you need to make up a good team of people who love their job and are experts in what they do.

The biggest challenge has always been finding good people, enough good people to get the job done. So we are constantly hiring; in fact, I would like to use this opportunity to invite anyone interested to contact us, check us out and see if you like what we do here.

As far as location goes, it wasn't about that at all for us. Our team is crucial for our success.

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Are you happy with how your business is developing? What is your perspective for the future?

I am happy. We have an excellent team, regular clients satisfied with our product, and we are working on some new technologies. So far, we have been doing well, and I hope the trend continues.

What opportunities are there in our city and our region?

Vukovar is a small town, and we need to keep that in mind. The pros of living here include no crowds, everyone knows everyone, and we are a very safe city. There are also some cons, primarily that we lack some facilities, but Osijek is 30 minutes away, which is not that far. When it comes to work, like anywhere, it heavily depends on what people do.

What is your view on other small businesses in the area?

We are trying to connect with other IT companies in the region. In 2019 we founded the association VVIT to connect and get to know IT companies in the region and promote our IT sector. Our region is not just about agriculture; we want to show a strong IT community here to get more people and companies to come in this direction.

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If we were to implement Vukovar Card, would you support the initiative, and what would you add to this idea?

I believe that tourism is a neglected economic branch in our region and any initiative to raise it to a higher level is welcome. However, I don't know whether this is the right way to do it. I don't know. We need good ways to attract people to come and see experience Slavonia, but this requires a joint effort of the state and private companies in tourism or related to tourism. The situation is getting better year by year, but very little has been done so far.

I read about this initiative and the proposed itinerary, and my suggestion would be to tone it down a little. Seven days at such a pace might be too much, and people would not get the real experience of Slavonia and Baranja, living a slow pace in which everything is still achieved. I am afraid that by day 3, our guests would become tired and would have had enough of it. Also, why not include family farms and private accommodation facilities, which are plentiful and offer much more than hotels in terms of experience and comfort.

Finally, tell us about life in Vukovar. What do you like most? What would you say to all potential visitors?

When you say Vukovar, the first thing I think of is the Danube. It is the second-largest river in Europe and the city that literally lies on its banks. The Danube provides sailing, fishing, swimming, exploring nature from land or water. Rare are the cities that lie on such large and mighty rivers.

I love living in a small town; I think it gives me everything I need at the moment. I always tell people to come and see, try, experience it. Give yourself a time plan in a relaxed way. Oh, and we are not that far from Zagreb... they say that Zagreb is about the same distance from us!

Where can we find you?

Check out our website as well as our Facebook page.

For more, check out our lifestyle section.

Saturday, 29 January 2022

Meet Vukovar 365, Full of Life: Monika Šrajbek of Vu Life

January 29, 2022 – Meet Monika Šrajbek, the head of tourism at the Vu Life Center, a one-stop shop for medical tourism in Vukovar.

With creativity flowing, amazing products that need to be heard of, and most importantly energy to do something significant for tourism in Vukovar, this small business strives to keep up with the times and always offer something new. Vu Life Center is one of the rare attempts of medical tourism in the city, offering aesthetic procedures using modern technology. What once was a private ob-gyn practice became a practice for aesthetic medicine and eventually grew into an agency in its own right. Today, it encompasses Vu Life Journey as a travel agency, as well as Vu Life Shop where you can buy souvenirs and amazing local products such as honey, lavender, toys, and more. We spoke to their head of tourism, Monika, who is in love with Vukovar and is on a mission to spread positivity and make everyone feel just the same as she does about it.

Tell us about your business, what do you do exactly?

My job is to manage the tourism department of our (still) small business. I take care of our accommodation facilities, which include booking, welcoming, and caring for our guests. I recently became the head of the travel agency which we opened last year. Because I enjoy my job so much, I do many different things, and I don’t call any of it work. 

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Where did you get the idea and what makes your offer unique?

Our director Mirjana Semenić Rutko started off with a private gynaecological practice. Perfecting her services, she acquired modern technology for medical aesthetics. This way, unique medical treatments for the face and body became possible in Vukovar and Slavonia. If you want to "iron out" some wrinkles or get rid of annoying cellulite, we’re here for you! In 2017, we opened 2 facilities for tourist accommodation. To make things run more smoothly and elevate our services, we opened Vu Life Center in 2018. With the development of the business came the idea that it would be nice to round up all the work that the company is engaged in. We ended up doing that through our travel agency Vu Life Journey. To create an even more special offer, we bought some VR glasses and got software developed to feature the stories of our museums: the City Museum, the Vučedol Culture Museum, the Vukovar Water Tower as well as one presenting a cruise on the Danube. Our VR stories provide a truly extraordinary experience – during your visit you can touch (and even break) dishes and objects that you would not find in a classic tour. Or imagine looking at paintings in the museum while Count Eltz himself plays the piano for his beloved…

And if you happen to visit and forget to buy a souvenir, don’t worry. You can order it in our webshop!
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What was it like starting a business in Vukovar? What were the main challenges?

It was not easy (not that it is anywhere in Croatia), and there were some obstacles, especially with paperwork. The main challenges now include creating a quality, interesting offer, networking, connecting, positioning ourselves on the market.

Do you think that the fact that you are in the east of Croatia influenced your success?

Doing business in eastern Croatia is actually a big advantage. We are the only ones in this part of the country with such an offer so our competition is minimal, if at all existent. Vukovar is in an excellent geographical position and is only a few hours away from big cities such as Zagreb, Budapest, Belgrade…

Are you satisfied with how your business is developing? What is your perspective for the future?

We are more than satisfied! To us, it is clear that we are moving in the right direction, and we hope that we will stay on that path. 

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What opportunities are there in our city and region?

There are many possibilities just waiting to be recognized. Some willpower goes a long way.

What is your view on other small businesses in Vukovar?

We are connected with many small businesses at the core of our existence. Our work is related to both private and public services. In my opinion, the essence of tourism lies in everyone coming together to market their best products – winemakers, food producers, renters, museums. 

One of the reasons why we started a webshop is to sell locally produced souvenirs. That part of our story is a bit slower, but we are happy with the progress.

If we were to implement the Vukovar Card, would you support the initiative?

Of course, we would! We support every idea that brings positivity to all. 

Finally, tell us something about life in Vukovar. What do you like most, what would you say to all potential visitors? A person and person posing for a picture

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From the moment I moved to Vukovar, I fell in love with it. It’s a beautiful city with a long and rich history. Almost every street has its own story. The people I met here have enriched my life (probably because positivity always attracts positivity). I would say to all visitors to come with an open heart and really get to know this special city and its surroundings!

Where can we find you?

On our main website, our travel agency as well as our webshop.

For more, check out our dedicated lifestyle section.

Saturday, 22 January 2022

Meet Vukovar 365, Full of Life: Dario Hegeduš of TS Allegro

January 22, 2022 – Meet Dario Hegeduš, a multi-talented young man who is working hard on preserving Croatian heritage in the east through music.

If you’ve ever watched a promo video about Slavonia, it’s likely that you heard the sound of tamburica. This little instrument is a type of lute, with a small round body and a long neck. It is believed that it originated in Persia and by way of Turkey reached its home in eastern Croatia where it remains an integral part of a good time (or a way to drown your sorrow). From festivals and parties to weddings and funerals, the sound of tamburica will follow the journey of the Slavonian soul. Just like anything traditional, though, in modern times, it sits on the margins of the music scene. So, to the rescue come people like Dario.

As he says, Dario started devoting his free time to the art of music as soon as he grew strong enough to hold a tamburica. Now he counts more than 20 years of experience and numerous successes, be it professional, on the music scene, or private – all involving the tradition. He started his own tamburaški sastav – a music band playing tamburica music, as well as a tamburica orchestra of 27 members. He has travelled half the world showing off his skills and made some beautiful friendships on the way. Dario also works for the Vukovar Tourist Board’s marketing department, creating and sharing some outstanding material promoting this beautiful city.

How long have you been involved in music and where did your love for the tamburica come from?

I’ve been involved in music for a full 20 years. It started when I was 9 and I finally gathered the strength to press the strings on a tamburica. All of my family is quite musical – my parents dance in a traditional ensemble, my sister and brother dance and play musical instruments, so I didn't want to be the black sheep. I started playing tamburica, grateful that I can help preserve Croatian tradition and heritage.

You decided to start your own tamburica band. Tell us about it.

When my friend and I remained among the youngest members of the tamburica section in HKGD "Dunav" (HKGD stands for Croatian Cultural and Musical Society), we realized that we should show our friends that playing tamburica is no less "cool" than other hobbies. After persuading everyone we knew, we managed to get all of three other guys to rejuvenate the tamburica section a bit, and ended up forming a band. After a few years, the team grew, and now I also conduct an orchestra of 27 members. A group of people posing for a photo

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What are your biggest successes?

I hope that the greatest successes are yet to come, but the first thing that came to mind was that I convinced this girl, a hip-hop rapper (now my wife), to become a lover of traditional music and that today she leads the children's dance section in HKGD "Dunav" in Vukovar.

As for awards, my favourites are those with my band and the orchestra, as being the national champion among many tamburica orchestras and representing Vukovar on the national and international scene is a true privilege.

What are all the possibilities open to you? Are you limited to eastern Croatia?

The music we play here is traditional Croatian and truly represents Eastern Slavonia and Srijem where we live. Traditional instruments are not so popular among the younger generations, but the tamburica and its great potential have found a place among young people. It is interesting to explore different types of music, from classical through rock, and of course traditional tunes, all in a tamburica version. Two tamburica studios have opened in Croatia, and the instrument is becoming popular in the rest of the world as well – as evidenced by our guest appearances and performances throughout Europe, in Canada, but also in China! A group of people holding a flag

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What are the best parts of your job in music?

Socializing and traveling, being part of a team creating the history of Vukovar through the preservation of tradition. This feeling makes me feel stronger and more enriched than anything else.

What are your hopes for the future?

I believe that the tamburica can become one of the reasons for tourists to visit our area, because of its uniqueness. It cannot be digitized, there is no virtual form, and combined with our cultural and natural heritage, the experience would enrich all travel itineraries.

Do you think that traditional music is sufficiently represented, how can we promote it?

It is sufficiently represented in the circles of our society through various festivals, events, media support, publishing houses, etc. The best promotion is to use the tamburica as an experience in our tourist offer. Imagine allowing every tourist to play their favorite song on an instrument they’re holding for the first time. A group of people performing on stage

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Apart from the fact that everyone in Vukovar knows you for your music, you work for the local tourist board. What is your job and what is the future of tourism in Vukovar?

I think that working for the tourist board goes hand in hand with the work I do in my free time. The PR, marketing, creativity, ideas, organization, acquisition of new skills and knowledge through working for the Tourist Board can be applied to music, and vice versa. The future of tourism in Vukovar looks bright, as evidenced by numerous analyzes of tourist arrivals and overnight stays, as well as cruiser arrivals. Cyclists, groups, and individuals who seek to explore cultural, sacral, natural heritage, memorial tourism, rich social content, gastronomic offer, etc. should all see Vukovar as the perfect destination.

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What do you think about the Vukovar Card idea? Will our Tourist Board support this initiative?

The Vukovar Tourist Board supports any initiative that contributes to the development of Vukovar as a tourist destination as well its economy, and Vukovar Card is another good idea. Currently, the Vukovar Tourist Board in cooperation with IQM Destination utilizes a Welcome Card that connects our tourist entities and facilities and provides tourists with additional value while visiting our city. I believe that Vukovar Card could be one of the additional motivators for the arrival of foreign and domestic tourists.

Finally, tell us why everyone should visit Vukovar, what is the best thing here?

The best thing here is certainly the people. Everyone knows that we are the best hosts, and when you have a good host, your visit to Vukovar cannot be any less than the best! And Vukovar – visit it for yourself. Getting to know the city will emotionally drain you, but then fill you with pride and joy which will always bind you to it. You will always come back. A group of people standing in front of a tall tower

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Let’s hear some of your music!

Check out our Facebook page where we share our music, successes, funny stories, and all you might want to know about us. For a soundtrack, go directly to our YouTube channel.

For more, check out our dedicated lifestyle section.

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