Srebrenica Memorial Quilts

In its work with women war victims, BOSFAM initiated carpet weaving as a means of occupational therapy. Any mother whose underage son went missing during the fall of Srebrenica always highlights that only weaving a carpet can help her “cope with her own misery.” She is one of the many who seek comfort in “dealing with threads and playing with colors.” In 2006, BOSFAM decided to create the first Srebrenica Memorial Quilt to honor the victims of the 1995 genocide.

Visit our gallery to see each quilt and learn the stories of each person commemorated.

What is a Memorial Quilt?

The Memorial Quilts are composed of individual panels, each of which commemorates a victim of the 1995 Srebrenica massacre. The Quilts not only honor the dead, but also serve as an advocacy tool to keep the memory of the massacre alive.

A small carpet, 40×40 cm, is woven for one missing person, in different colours and with different patterns and contains the name of the person. The panels are then merged together creating a large carpet. BOSFAM women started the Srebrenica Memorial Quilt project by commemorating 20 victims of the genocide on 20 panels. By the time of the 20th anniversary of the genocide in 2015, BOSFAM will have made 16 Memorial Quilts. The Memorial Quilts have attracted much attention and continue to travel around the world raising awareness of the tragedy in Srebrenica and making sure that another Srebrenica will not happen anywhere in the world.

Who makes the quilts?

The panels are woven by members of BOSFAM, women who lost their relatives in the Srebrenica massacre. BOSFAM weavers are always willing to weave new panels for other families.

Why a carpet?

A carpet is the lasting value of our rooms, and as much as someone might wish it to disappear – it exists, subsists and is of lasting value. A carpet is woven with love; threads, patterns and colours are interwoven in large number to make a whole – like the large number of destinies of our dearest that merged – the destiny of the genocide victims. A carpet always recalls the warmth of the home and the family and shall always and in all places recall the members of our families who perished in the genocide – they shall be remembered.

What do the Memorial Quilts seek to accomplish?

BOSFAM’s wish is to make quilts in the memory of the victims of the Srebrenica genocide, woven in the traditional way by the hands of hard-working Bosnian women, to add more names of the victims to create a permanent remembrance of the genocide and to make sure that there will be never again be another Srebrenica.